Pulp and Paper

Large-scale tree monocultures to produce pulp and paper, along with the infrastructure and pulp mills that come with these plantations, have been expanding onto communities’ fertile lands. They have destroyed forests and grasslands, especially in Latin America, Asia and Southern Africa. The species used are fast-growing and not native to these countries. They include varieties of eucalyptus, acacia and pine trees.

This publication aims to alert community groups and activists about the corporate push for a new round of large-scale tree plantation expansion.

Fossil fuels are at the root of the climate chaos – but the conditions for this crisis have been created by the interconnections and dependencies between colonialism, racism, patriarchy and class exploitation. To address climate chaos, therefore, it is necessary to address the unequal relationships of power upon which a fossil-fuel dependent capitalism is based.
The Independent Producers of Piray (PIP) in Misiones, Argentina was formed in 2005 to stop the advance of multinational Arauco’s pine tree monocultures and reclaim the land. WRM spoke with Miriam Samudio, a key member of the PIP family, to reflect on the process of the struggle and the lessons learned.
More than 10 million hectares in Indonesia are controlled by the pulp and paper industry, mainly by two giant corporations: APP and APRIL. Despite the companies’ commitments to protect forests and peatland, both keep being associated with deforestation, forest fires and to a business model of violence, criminalization and dispossession of forest communities. (Available in Bahasa Indonesia)
A conversation with the president of the Volta Miúda Quilombola Association and of the Southernmost part of Bahia Quilombola Cooperative revealed how Suzano, the world’s largest paper and cellulose corporation, continues to operate with serious violations and illegalities. Communities keep fighting to reclaim their lands back.
A documentary produced by the audiovisual collective, Ojo de Treile, shows how industrial monoculture plantations in southern Chile have been causing mega-droughts and voracious forest fires.

Suzano was present at the 2021 UN climate negotiations for one main reason: to promote tree plantations as a ‘solution’ to climate change, under the name of ‘nature-based solutions’. It aims to profiteer ever more from the so-called climate policies.

Tupinikim indigenous leaders, in Brazil, share the experience of their people in the struggle against one of the largest eucalyptus plantation and pulp production companies in the world, Aracruz Celulose – currently named Suzano Papel e Celulose.

Green Resources Tanzania Limited (GRL)claims to offer solutions to climate change through planting monoculture trees. This wrong and misleading claim hides the reality on the ground: land grabbing, deforestation, destruction of grasslands and much social harm.

On the frontlines of the promotion of monoculture tree plantations as a solution to the climate crisis, families affected by tree plantations in Mozambique, Tanzania and Brazil, have once again denounced the serious impacts on their lives and the environment.