Dear friends of the rainforests,
Our partners in the ALDAW indigenous network in the Philippines have called on us for our help. The Philippine government plans to promote oil palm plantations on a vast scale on the tropical islands of Mindanao and Palawan, on rainforest land and the ancestral homes of small farmers and indigenous peoples. The residents own the land, and grow fruits, vegetables, rice and coconut palms there. They also use the forests as a source of food and materials for house construction and crafts.
With their sustainable way of life, the indigenous peoples have helped preserve their natural treasures, including many animal and plant species in danger of extinction. Because of this abundance, Palawan has been listed as a UNESCO Man and Biosphere Reserve since 1990. The government’s palm oil plans are an existential threat to the future of the indigenous residents and their environment.