WWF International’s Global Conservation Director, Kavita Prakash-Mani, recently shared that despite the zero-deforestation pledges by hundreds of companies and governments, deforestation is still continuing at a rapid scale. And with the 2020 deadlines fast approaching, most of these entities will not be able to meet their own targets. As such, Kavita provides five steps that companies can take to turn their zero-deforestation commitments into actions.
- Companies should work on delivering their pledge by making their supply chains more transparent, through the setting of annual targets and delivering detailed reports. They should publicly disclose their progress to date, set new targets for the years leading up to 2030 and detail out how they are planning to deliver them.
- Companies to make use of the Accountability Framework, to familiarise themselves with the common definitions, norms and good practices in delivering and monitoring the progress of their commitments. The Accountability Framework guidance is developed ‘through close coordination with credible certification standards, including the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO)’.
- Ensure that commitments are people-centric. Kavita says that companies should strive to uphold the rights of the indigenous people are respected, as well as including smallholders are a part of their supply chains.
- Companies should look beyond their supply chains by working with partners to pursue other complementary strategies, like supporting jurisdictional initiatives or sector-wide sustainability initiatives. Kavita shares that Unilever, for example, has committed USD 2.5 million to support Sabah in getting 100% of its oil palm plantations, RSPO-certified by 2025.
- Lastly, companies can use their influence to encourage governments to adopt stronger sustainability policies, thus creating an enabling environment to end deforestation across whole territories.
Considering the availability of the tools mentioned above, the RSPO supports Kavita’s position; there’s no reason why we can’t move towards being deforestation-free. Read the full article, here.