Note: to sign GJEP’s petition to the US Department of Agriculture demanding a ban on the commercial development of GMO eucalyptus plantations in the US, please click here.
–The GJEP Team
21 September, 2012. Source: Geasphere
September 21st is the International Day of Struggle against Monoculture Tree Plantations. In many countries around the world, people use this day to create awareness regarding the impacts of monoculture tree plantations.
In India, Ireland, the US, Brazil, Uruguay, South Africa, Swaziland, Mozambique, Indonesia, China and other countries vast monoculture timber plantations have been established, which put pressure on the land and the natural resources. Monoculture Tree Plantations destroy indigenous biodiversity, desiccate the water resource and impact on the most vulnerable rural people by denying them the land resource and opportunities a healthy integrated environment provides.
On 21 September 2011, a petition was launched, directed at the Global Solidarity Forest Fund (GSFF), a investment fund with northern investors. The GSFF has acquired vast land in the northern provinces of Niassa and Zambezia in Mozambique, and are in the process of establishing monoculture eucalyptus timber plantations – for export purposes.
The petition calls on the GSFF to stop investing in such high impact monoculture’s, and rather to support small scale, diversified enterprise which benefit the local people and stimulate local economy.
Today we present the petition to the GSFF – containing more than 10 000 signatures.
We hope the GSFF takes note of this unprecedented show of international support for this petition, and re-consider and adapt their investment strategies in southern Africa.
The land and its valuable biodiversity resource should not be smothered by alien monoculture tree plantations. The precious water should not be stolen from the people and the natural environment.
Ten Thousand Times NO !
Online Petition Text:
The Global Solidarity Forest Fund (GSFF), invested in among others by the ABP (a Dutch pensioners fund), the Swedish and Norwegian Lutheran church and the Diocese of Vasteras, has in recent years acquired large areas of land in northern Mozambique.
This land, which has already mainly been transformed to monoculture tree plantations, mainly consisting of alien Eucalyptus trees, has formerly been used by local small-scale farmers to grow local crops for livelihood.
Yet, subsequent to the planting of the alien trees by the GSFF, the local population has experienced a worsening of the water and food situation in their communities. Contrary to the promises by the Western investors, jobs are rare and not at all well-paid. This, in consequence means that, as local populations lost their valuable land, and as they also do not have sufficient employment opportunities, they are left struggling for food and water.
In general, large monoculture tree plantations are increasingly being criticized globally for their many negative impacts on the environment and peoples. By now, many experts believe that monoculture tree plantations have a negative impact on Climate Change, as the transformation of land and the cutting down of the indigenous trees and the planted trees cause CO2 to be released – accelerating the warming process.
Instead of planting up vast areas of fertile land with trees meant to satisfy the high demand of Western nations for paper and other wood-based products, diversified, organic small-scale farming, which benefit local communities should be primary projects initiated by development investments.
This petition aims at prevailing on the GSFF to immediately stop its investment in such exploitative and unethical land deals and transformations in Mozambique and any other African countries!
Also visit the World Rainforest Movement, a co-sponsor of the petition. http://www.wrm.org.uy for information on September 21st Activities around the world.