Saturday, April 14, 2007

Is This The Design Of Economic Hitmen
To Weaken Malaysian Palm Oil Industry?

Several foreign-based non-governmental organisations (NGOs) were said to have claimed that oil palm plantations on peat soil in Sarawak produce excessive carbon dioxide and contribute to global warming., carried an item on this today. The paper quoted Dr Lulie Melling, a senior research officer at the Sarawak State Agriculture Department, as saying that “we have data to prove that the allegations are false. Our research has shown that peat soil produces three times less than the normal emission of gas from other soils.”

Another officer, Lau Jau Uyo - the department’s soil management head - said that if the NGOs succeeded in their attempts to influence the United Nations and the European Union, it would have a negative effect on Malaysia, particularly Sarawak which had about a million hectares of oil palm plantations on peat soil.

These allegations will have grave impacts on our economy. The government of Malaysia has to be sensitive to such claims. If left without being rebutted, such claims may ruin Malaysia’s palm oil industry. If the government chooses to put a deaf ear to these claims, states like Sabah, Sarawak, Johor and Pahang will be the great losers. Government agencies like Felda too will be jeopardized. In short, the chain-effects are endless.

In addition to efforts undertaken by the government to prove the allegations are baseless, thorough investigations also need to be carried out. The government has to uncover who are behind those NGOs? Are they not part of the tentacles of any international elements out to wreck Malaysian economy? Are there possibilities that such NGOs are being backed or are working in tandem with any international economic hitmen? [Note: for background reading, Confessions Of An Economic Hitman, a book by John Perkins, is recommended!] – Ruhanie Ahmad


wong soga said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
wong soga said...

[this is the deleted post you noted above. i wanted to preview it first to check for mistakes, but clicked published instead. my apology tok.]

peace tok!

perhaps you may want to consider the fact that there is a new worldwide craze on palm oil - health friendly, a wide range of by products (perhaps 1 in every 10 products they have in your regular grocery store has palm oil content - chocolates, lipsticks, breads, detergents, etc.). and now, bio-diesel.

a higher demand therefore calls for a higher supply, thus more plantations needed to be opened up. this tropical palm is a water guzzler, thus they thrive in peat soils which has been for so long ignored (especially in the tropics).

the bigger issue is really about our attitude and role in sustainable management of the earth - do we compromise the earth merely for profits? perhaps you may want to acquaint yourself with friends of the earth movement. the concern is wholesome. not just palm oil, but oil palm plantations.

i believe in al-Qur'an Allah says in 2:11, "do not spoil about the earth," though others like abdullah yusuf ali translated it as, "make not mischief on the earth." in malay it is, "jangan buat kerosakan di bumi." and you can employ it for both its macro or micro considerations.

it is common knowledge among geologists and scientists that the utilization of peat soil will release co2, and effect a shrinkage or lowering in the soil level (some say by 20cm p.a.) perhaps you may want to read here. the onus is therefore on dr melling to furnish us the facts, and not just make a 'claim' without a single proof. where are the facts for us to read and evaluate? i don't suppose he wanted us to believe him without any proof?

essentially, we need to differentiate between sabotage and concern for sustainable management.

in as far as palm oil is concerned, sabotage has been the theme song of those involved in other vegetable oils threatened by palm oil (in terms of quality & price). usually they 'use' bona fide 'concerns' like cspi . even the british government's 'eat well' advisory listed 'palm oil' as bad for your health.

for those concerned, perhaps they want to read the papers consulted by fao (of the un) on palm oil and soya. although scientific tests has shown the good qualities of palm oil, they simply dismiss or disregard it. ignorance, convenience, preference or whatever the reasons is beyond our inkling!

however, most can perhaps be excused when they missed concern for sabotage, as the dividing lines are getting more and more blurred. people tend to do or employ anything when threatened.

but our favorite phrase thus, "we concentrate on our roles" (kita tumpukan pada kerja kita) - promote the goodness of palm oil and concern ourselves with sustainable management. let the people decide. insha-Allah we will thrive.

to unduly worry or to unnecessarily fear, lies at the very root of unhappiness.

but life is too short indeed to waste in unhappiness. peace!


cyberprince said...

Saudara Wong Soga

Thank you. I am very well aware of the various medicinal qualities of palm oil. That goes without saying. Much literature about it we can dig from the net.

I am also in agreement with you on the sustainable management of the earth and that the bigger issue here is "our" attitude and "role" regarding this sustainable management of the earth.

But, what about the attitude of the western world towards this issue of global warming? Why is the US still procastinating on the signing of the Kyoto Protocol on global warming?

That is why I said it is unfair for any foreign based NGOs to tell the whole world that the opening up of peat soil regions of our country for oil palm estates is one of the major reasons that contribute to global warming. It is rather uncalled for.

That is why I throw a question if the ulterior motive behind it is to ruin our entire palm oil industry, hence contribute to the weakenening of our enonomy.

So, while we appreciate their concern on the increasing rate of global warming, it is grossly unfair for anybody for that matter, just to single out Malaysia.

I know and you know, the biggest culprit that causes the thining of the ozone through the emission of chlorofluro carbon into the atmosphere is the western world.

Therefore, it is only fair for those NGOs to be concerned about Malaysia in a very positive manner. They should come out with recommendations and solutions. Not just blatantly accused Malaysia as the latest contributor to global warming through the opening up of our pat soil regions for palm oil plantataions.

Dont you agree with me? Well, that is how is should be!!

Thank you.

Ruhanie Ahmad

wong soga said...

salaam tok

sorry for the late reply. anyway, we only refer to the last 4 paragraphs of your post.

as you know, many other parties have been identified as culprits in the global warming problem. since you inferred that the internet has abundant resources for study, perhaps you may want to read them. the problem of global warming is not just about malaysia.

is it not a fact that;
a. malaysia & indonesia are the world's leading planters of oil palm?
b. both had cleared vast areas of of the world's oldest tropical rainforest for oil palm?
c. both had also utilized vast areas of peat soil for oil palm and pineapples?

i stand corrected if all of the above is wrong. my apology in advance, indeed.

it is strange to suggest that foe is bent only on smearing both countries. look at the list of countries implicated in their campaigns.

and equally weird too when foe is required to provide programs for the sustainable management of palm oil productions. that onus rests on the country producers which have already established rspo.

and allow me to quote the new york times;

“Yes, there have been bad examples in the palm oil industry,” said Arjen Brinkman, a company official at Biox, a young company that plans to build three palm oil electrical plants in Holland, using oil from palms grown on its own plantations in a manner that it says is responsible.

“But it is now clear,” he said, “that to serve Europe’s markets for biofuel and bioenergy, you will have to prove that you produce it sustainably — that you are producing less, not more CO2.”

the root of the problem is when you feel that someone out there is very much against you, or worst still when you think the western world is against only you.

have a good day, tok.