Palm oil giant Wilmar ranked the worst company in the world
26 April

After having been denounced for human rights abuses, Wilmar, the largest palm oil trading company in the world, has been ranked as environmentally the worst performing firm as far as it concerns its environmental footprints and management.

Palm oil company Wilmar has been ranked by Newsweek magazine as environmentally the worst performing firm in the world. The Newsweek Green Rankings cut through the green chatter and compare the actual environmental footprints, management (policies, programs, initiatives, controversies), and reporting practices of big companies. Newsweek collaborated with research providers Trucost and Sustainalytics in order to assess each company’s environmental footprint, its management  and transparency*. Wilmar is the largest palm oil trading company in the world, accounting for about 45% of globally traded palm oil and holding a ‘land bank’ of over 600,000 hectares, principally in Sabah, Sarawak, Sumatra and Kalimantan in Malaysia and Indonesia. It is also expanding its operations into Africa.

In addition to denounced human rights abuses in Wilmar group plantations and civil society's complaint on transparency and corporate social responsibility on Wilmar, the company hits another time the headlines thanks to a report written by a Rainforest Foundation Norway team that travelled to Central Kalimantan to take a look at the pilot province’s forests under the Letter of intent signed by Indonesia and Norway for a $1 billion REDD deal. The total area already under various forms of forestry licenses in Central Kalimantan is almost 13 million hectares, making up 78% of the total area of the province, where most of the plantation area belongs to Wilmar. Rainforest Foundation Norway team and the Norwegian Government Pension Fund Global (GPFG) denounce Wilmar being responsible for tropical deforestation and environmental degradation of the area. This is the reason why GPFG’s investments in the palm oil industry are reduced by more than 40% by the end of 2012.

* The companies are ranked by their overall Green Score, deriving from the environmental impact score (45%), the environmental management score (45%) and the environmental disclosure score (10%).

Sources: NewsweekRedd Monitor, Forest Peoples, Rain Forest Foundation Norway

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