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Will Oil Palm’s Homecoming Spell Doom for Africa’s Great Apes?

Wich, Serge A., Garcia-Ulloa, John, Kühl, Hjalmar S., Humle, Tatyana, Lee, Janice S.H., Koh, Lian Pin (2014) Will Oil Palm’s Homecoming Spell Doom for Africa’s Great Apes? Current Biology, 24 (14). pp. 1659-1663. ISSN 0960-9822. (doi:10.1016/j.cub.2014.05.077) (The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided)

The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided. (Contact us about this Publication)
Official URL
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cub.2014.05.077

Abstract

Expansion of oil palm plantations has led to extensive wildlife habitat conversion in Southeast Asia [ 1 ]. This expansion is driven by a global demand for palm oil for products ranging from foods to detergents [ 2 ], and more recently for biofuels [ 3 ]. The negative impacts of oil palm development on biodiversity [ 1, 4, 5 ], and on orangutans (Pongo spp.) in particular, have been well documented [ 6, 7 ] and publicized [ 8, 9 ]. Although the oil palm is of African origin, Africa’s production historically lags behind that of Southeast Asia. Recently, significant investments have been made that will likely drive the expansion of Africa’s oil palm industry [ 10 ]. There is concern that this will lead to biodiversity losses similar to those in Southeast Asia. Here, we analyze the potential impact of oil palm development on Africa’s great apes. Current great ape distribution in Africa substantially overlaps with current oil palm concessions (by 58.7%) and areas suitable for oil palm production (by 42.3%). More importantly, 39.9% of the distribution of great ape species on unprotected lands overlaps with suitable oil palm areas. There is an urgent need to develop guidelines for the expansion of oil palm in Africa to minimize the negative effects on apes and other wildlife. There is also a need for research to support land use decisions to reconcile economic development, great ape conservation, and avoiding carbon emissions.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1016/j.cub.2014.05.077
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GF Human ecology. Anthropogeography
H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
Q Science > QH Natural history > QH75 Conservation (Biology)
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Anthropology and Conservation
Depositing User: Tatyana Humle
Date Deposited: 20 Oct 2014 09:58 UTC
Last Modified: 29 May 2019 13:14 UTC
Resource URI: https://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/43504 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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