Large-Scale Tree Plantations

Industrial tree plantations are large-scale, intensively managed, even-aged monocultures, involving vast areas of fertile land under the control of plantation companies. Management of plantations involves the use of huge amounts of water as well as agrochemicals—which harm humans, and plants and animals in the plantations and surrounding areas.

The International Day of Struggle against Monoculture Plantations, September 21st recognizes the courage and strength behind the resistance processes against industrial plantations.
The Palmas del Ixcán company has used multiple tactics to grab land, as well as a deceptive RSPO certification process and the use of “independent producers.” Despite criminalization of communities, their resistance grows ever stronger.
More than 10,000 people have been evicted to make way for the UK-registered New Forests Company (NFC)’s tree plantations, which are established and financed under the carbon market framework.
Oil palm company Socfin has meant oppression for affected communities. Yet, women have to confront another patriarchic system. Paramount Chiefs are the custodian of the land according to customary law, which often give men decision-making and ownership power over land.
Oil palm plantations are one of the most unsafe spaces for women, not only because of their vulnerable working status packed with injustices and precarities, but also because of the potential for sexual violence and harassment. (Available in Indonesian).
Suzano, the world’s largest producer of eucalyptus pulp, is seeking to intensify its operations with so-called ‘green bonds’ as a way to finance its expansion projects.
The Sangha region is entirely under the control of three concessions that have colonial origins and continue to deploy guards against the forest inhabitants to prevent them using their ancestral lands.
As the devastating effects of climate change become more immediate and severe, corporate interests are promoting the use of unproven and potentially dangerous genetically engineered (GE) trees for climate mitigation schemes, including carbon offsetting and an emerging bioeconomy. A statement released by The Campaign to STOP GE Trees warns of the ecological and social harm of using GE trees, in “false solution” climate mitigation schemes.
A recent publication form the WRM explains how contract farming with palm oil companies works, and why it is a serious threat to peasant farming and food sovereignty. The booklet looks at nine of the most common promises that companies make, and most importantly, the information they conceal behind each promise. The publication is available in English, Portuguese, French, Spanish and Bahasa Indonesia.
A recent article from Mongabay warns on how the palm oil industry is expanding rapidly in the Brazilian Amazon. Oil palm coverage in northern Pará increased almost five-fold between 2010 and 2019. Studies have shown that the conversion of forests into oil palm plantations is a major problem.  Most of Brazil’s palm oil production is controlled by eight companies.