Palm oil encroaching on protected areas in Chiapas, Mexico, driving “clandestine” deforestation

29.06.2017

Illegal oil palm development is playing a leading role in deforestation in the Mexican state of Chiapas, according to a government source interviewed by a reporter for Mongabay.

A source from the Chiapas government told the environmental news website that the principal cause of the destruction of the state’s forests are illegal clearances by “clandestine businesses” working at night.

Chiapas is both the most biodiverse state in Mexico and its biggest palm oil producer, responsible for 70% of the country’s total output.

Four of the palm nurseries established in Chiapas are the biggest in Latin America, according to the Institute for the Promotion of Tropical Agriculture.

The state’s Rural Secretariat has voiced its ambition to expand palm oil to cover at least 100,000 hectares.

Palm oil plantations have already displaced primary forest in Chiapas, according to Leon Avila, a palm oil specialist at the Intercultural University of Chiapas who has investigated the crop’s expansion. He told Mongabay that plantations have encroached on one of the state’s eight protected areas, the Montes Azules Biosphere Reserve.

More from Illegal Deforestation Monitor

ISPO / Indonesia's recent “reform” of palm oil sustainability scheme criticised for threatening forests and human rights

Continue reading
UK military / Brazil beef supplier used by Ministry of Defence buys from farmers guilty of illegal deforestation, fires and fraud

Continue reading
Cameroon / Local women fight back against controversial palm oil, rubber firms accused of destroying community way of life 

Continue reading
Mexico / Decline of monarch butterflies shows need for greater forest protections

Continue reading
Cocoa / New report emphasises threats major firms face in not having a full picture of their supply chains

Continue reading
Colniza massacre / Repórter Brasil investigation reveals links between JBS and Marfrig and  farmer accused of brutal 2017 killings

Continue reading
Tanah Merah / Auditor kayu Indonesia akan menyelidiki tuduhan izin-izin palsu bagi kayu senilai $6Milyar



Continue reading
Norges Bank / Norwegian sovereign wealth fund divests from consumer giant Alicorp over palm oil-linked destruction in Peru

Continue reading
JBS / Brazil meatpacking giant urged to improve monitoring as  politicians and NGOs pile on pressure 

Continue reading
SVLK / Indonesian timber auditors to probe allegations of faked permits for $6bn of wood at Tanah Merah mega-project 

Continue reading

Stay up to date with all Earthsight news & updates

Receive email updates for the latest news and insights from Earthsight and be among the first to read our new investigations.

We keep your data secure and don’t share anything with third parties. Read full terms.