Saturday, May 12, 2012

Stop Land Grabbing and Deforestration

Found this video made for Friends of the Earth about how John Muyisa's land was taken from him unjustly for being used as palm oil plantation in Kalangala, Uganda. It's quite a sad video and I get upset that someones' rights can just be ignored like this! (Read more on their webpage)

Incidentally, I happened to see a video about REDD -Reduced Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation- the same day and realized that they are quite interlinked. REDD is an initiative by the UN and the World Bank and the idea is that governments, companies or forest owners should be rewarded for keeping their forests instead of cutting them down. This is a good idea but some fear that this would be done through carbon trading which would not be beneficial to small landowners like John Muyisa. Instead, the focus should be on the consumers using and buying less products that causes deforestation and on giving the land rights to the rightful owners. (Read more here and here)

This is is a complicated matter that needs to be solved gently as it involves both politics, businesses, consumers and the land owners. I hope that we will manage to come to a sustainable solution.


  1. Ending deforestation isn't simple. Most of us think that it's just a matter of stopping it but in truth we're dealing with real people and their lives. When a person is trying to feed his family, it doesn't seem practical to ask him to think about the earth first. I agree with your statement that change needs to come from the consumer end. Thank you, as always, for a thought-provoking post.

    1. Thanks for reading and sharing your thoughts! We're doing babysteps at the moment but hopefully many babysteps will lead us in the right direction.