Skip to Content

Reduced consumption of forest-risk commodities

Fern’s aim is for the EU to launch an action plan to protect forests and respect rights.

Fern’s analysis: An area of forest the size of Portugal was lost globally between 2010 and 2015 because of EU consumption of commodities grown on deforested land. Such destruction often violates the rights of local communities and indigenous peoples, causes massive biodiversity loss, and contributes to climate change. Deforestation, forest degradation and drained peatland in tropical regions account for 10 per cent of all carbon dioxide emissions globally.

The EU is one of the largest drivers of deforestation and has publically stated its intention to be part of the solution. By signing up to Sustainable Development Goal 15, for example, the EU has committed to halting its role in deforestation by 2020. This mammoth task will require European Commission departments to work together to coordinate action to change EU consumption and production patterns including through production, energy, agriculture, trade, investment, and finance policies. Member States, NGOs and academics are therefore calling on the EU to develop an EU Action Plan to Protect Forests and Respect Rights. The EU is currently undertaking a feasibility study for an EU Action Plan to Halt Deforestation and Forest Degradation. Such an action plan can ensure the EU only imports ecologically viable levels of legally and sustainably sourced forest-risk commodities.

What Fern is doing: Fern has produced a series of reports looking at the key areas of EU action which would help protect forests and therefore meet Sustainable Development Goal 15. We facilitate an NGO coalition to work with the EU to produce an action plan to reduce its role in deforestation.

Click on the links to find out more information on:

Most recent publications

How to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals? Focus on forests

In September 2015, world governments adopted an Agenda for Sustainable Development with 17 universal Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to be achieved by 2030. The aims are noble and daunting – end all forms of poverty, fight inequality, address climate change, and ensure that no one is left behind.

DocumentSize
PDF iconFocus on forests.pdf401.04 KB

Developing EU measures to address forest-risk commodities: What can be learned from EU regulation of other sectors?

The EU is one of the largest drivers of tropical deforestation. Consumption of agricultural commodities has given the EU a huge and largely unacknowledged footprint in the rainforests. To reduce its forest footprint, the EU must regulate European trade and consumption of forest-risk commodities such as soy, palm oil, beef, leather and cocoa.

DocumentSize
PDF iconDeveloping EU measures.pdf1.69 MB

Letter to Commissioner Hogan re: commitment to promote meat consumption

Twelve NGOs have written to the Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development to express concerns about his commitment to invest in promoting meat consumption in Europe and European beef in foreign markets.

New site shines a spotlight on pandemic of deforestation driven by illegal agriculture

A new website has been launched to monitor the devastating impact of illegal large-scale commercial agriculture as a driver of global deforestation.

Fern's input to the EU Consultation on revising the European Consensus on Development

Fern's input into the European Commission consultation on how development policy, in the context of EU external action as foreseen by the Lisbon Treaty, should respond to the range of landmark 2015 summits and conferences, and also to the rapid changes happening in the world.

DocumentSize
PDF iconFern response to consultation.pdf107.78 KB

Pages