How much of the rainforest loss can be attributed to the palm oil industry?



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    It is hard to determine the exact amount of damage that can be attributed to the palm oil industry, but there are several examples of their direct effects to destroy the rainforest. For instance, oil palm has been a major factor in deforestation, espeically in Indonesia and Malaysia. Over a twelve year period from 1985 and 1997 Indonesia cleared 60% of the rainforest in Kalimantan. In Malaysia 47 % of oil palm expansion up to 2002 was deforested. The area was about 5600 square miles. Indonesia’s total loss of land is estimated at about 7000 square miles. Of the 400 species existing in Indonesia, 140 are threatened, which can be seen as an indirect effect of palm oil deforestation. Oil palm has also provoked a loss of biodiversity, because trees, cines, shrubs, and mosses are destroyed in order to plant oil palm. Duke reserachers have attributed the palm oil industry directly with the loss of orangutans on Sumatra. 

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