100% Certified Sustainable Palm Oil by 2020: A Climate Change Imperative
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Building on previous RSPO European Roundtables which focused on 'Shared Responsibility' and a 'Shared Action Plan' this year's event will stimulate a dialogue between the key players regarding what further steps must be taken to stimulate market transformation and increase the uptake of certified sustainable palm oil (CSPO) in Europe, in order to reduce deforestation and greenhouse gas emissions from palm oil production, while supporting livelihoods and economic development.
World leaders came together in 2015 to adopt both the far-reaching 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the ambitious Paris Agreement on Climate Change, providing renewed commitment and momentum for action on poverty eradication, environmental conservation and climate change. The adoption of the Paris Agreement in December 2015 sends a clear signal to markets that the transformation of the global economy to low-emission growth must become a priority. Rising demand for palm oil makes the market transformation to certified sustainable palm oil even more essential to tackle climate change. The new global goals for sustainable development embody a commitment to leave no one behind. Achieving these them requires collaboration and collective action. Inclusive partnerships such as the RSPO will become increasingly important to transform markets and mainstream sustainability.
The Amsterdam Declaration 2015, signed by a number of European governments, demonstrates political will and support for the goal of 100% sustainable palm oil in Europe by 2020, and provides an opportunity to leverage.
RSPO certification is a means of implementation for companies committed to acting on climate change and the recently launched addition of RSPO NEXT criteria takes this further through requirements for zero deforestation and no planting on peat.
Supporting palm oil smallholders to become sustainable is essential in order to produce more oil using less land, reducing the threat to forests and biodiversity, and raising level of income among poor farmers.
Even as the impact of RSPO certification grows against the backdrop of high level political and corporate commitments, there remains a significant gap between the supply of certified sustainable palm oil and its uptake. The RSPO EURT will discuss how to close the gap and make 100% CSPO in Europe by 2020 a reality.