Palm oil plantations of Borneo from space •

Palm oil plantations of Borneo from space


Palm oil plantations of Borneo from space Today’s Video of the Day from the European Space Agency gives us a satellite view of palm oil plantations on the island of Borneo.

Palm oil is the most consumed edible vegetable oil in the world because it is used in a such a wide range of high demand products.

From 1980 to 2014, global palm oil production increased from 4.5 million tons to 70 million tons, and is still expanding.

The clearing of tropical forests to make room for palm oil plantations is extremely bad for the climate and is wiping out habitat for species such as the orangutan, which is now critically endangered. The Copernicus Sentinel-2 mission takes us over palm oil plantations in East Kalimantan—the Indonesian part of the island Borneo. Palm oil is the most widely-produced tropical edible oil. It’s used in a vast array of products, from ice cream and chocolates, to cosmetics such as make up and soap, to biofuel. As seen above in video Palm oil plantations of Borneo from space shows the tons of oil.

The use of herbicides and pesticides can also impact species composition and pollute local waterways. Drainage systems required for plantations (oil palm plantations in Borneo are often established in swamp forest) may lower water tables, affecting neighboring forest areas. Further, destruction of peat lands increases the risk of flooding and fire.


By Chrissy Sexton, Staff Writer

Video Credit: European Space Agency

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