Rubber

The rubber tree is native to the Amazon rainforest, but rubber plantations have spread across every tropical forest region. These plantations are increasingly large-scale, intensively-managed and have even-aged trees. The rubber is used for industrial purposes, such as the production of car tires. In some regions, small-scale rubber plantations are part of peasant farming. In the Amazon region, rubber continues to be extracted from trees that grow in the forest.

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

The control of land was vital to colonisers. It meant wealth, territorial influence, access to ‘resources’ and cheap (and often enslaved) labour. The separation of indigenous inhabitants from their territories was a crucial component that persists until today. The effect of this history continues to influence the management of and conflicts over land.
British firms not only controlled 80 per cent of the established ‘logging lands’ in Thailand, but they also influenced the establishment of the Royal Forest Department, which came to have total power over the nation’s forests. Massive land grabs and various colonial laws made half the country’s territory into a colony of the central state.
What a certain historiography terms civilizational expansion or capital’s expansion has in fact been the invasion and de-territorialization of peoples and communities using much epistemic and territorial violence. Concessions have been granted in areas that are not demographic voids, a colonial concept that ignores the fact that they have been populated for millennia.
Colonial and anti-colonial movements’ have deeply shaped the patterns and impacts of concessions in SE Asia. In some cases, communities have experienced dispossession through land grabs dressed as concessions. In others, concessions are part of a re-concentration of land holding. Either way, the concession model fits well with ideologies of modernisation.

How are forest crimes defined? In Thailand, forest-dependant communities, rather than the government and companies carrying out large-scale deforestation, became scapegoats for this destruction. (Available in Thai).

It is a day for organizations, networks and movements to celebrate resistance and raise their voices to demand, “Stop the Expansion of Monoculture Tree Plantations!"

The industrial production of natural rubber has always been synonymous with destruction and exploitation. About 70% is used to manufacture tires. As the use of cars, trucks and airplanes increases, the use of rubber will also increase. And this does not come without controversy.

Blue Carbon (or Blue REDD+) appeared as a new carbon offset scheme between emissions and carbon absorption in coastal territories. However, organizations in Indonesia warn that the initiative is a strategy to change the coastal and marine territories into tradable assets .

Millions of hectares of mostly forested areas in Malaysia have been targeted for developing monoculture plantations –including expanding timber plantations-, however, many of these have not been fully developed yet.

The declaration is open for sign-on in solidarity until 31 January 2019.