It’s been acknowledged that deforestation is the second biggest factor in climate change and at last years Bali summit, the World bank launched a . . . “groundbreaking financing mechanism to combat tropical deforestation and climate change”
So far, so good?
Well apart from the fact that the Forest Carbon Partnership Facility initiative will allow the rainforests to be included in the dubious carbon offsetting schemes that make it easier for industrialised countries to buy their way out of eco-responsibility, it’s emerged that the World Bank shows no signs of ending it’s funding of the rainforest’s biggest threat – cattle ranching.
The widespread growth of cattle ranching is largely in response to increasing global demands for beef and is said to be the biggest threat to the survival of the rainforests. To the detriment of the local people, it is the wealthy landowners that prosper – they gain their land by exploitative and corrupt means. This process of corruption is similar to that covered by Matt in his post on China’s desertification policy.
The World Bank website hypocritically states that . . . “The Forest Carbon Partnership Facility (FCPF) was developed because forests are more important left standing than cut.” . . . while it continues to aid cattle ranching which is responsible for clearing vast amounts of rainforest hence destroying eco-systems and disrupting or destroying the habitats of many species.
Cattle ranching is lucrative but unsustainable . . . and very destructive. The World Bank should be investing in sustainable development programmes that directly benefit the indigenous people rather than promoting globalisation and embracing anti-poor policies that make the rich richer and the planet poorer.