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Norway Has Become The First Country To Ban Deforestation

by | September 25, 2018

The Norwegian Parliament pledges on May 26th that the government’s public procurement policy will be deforestation-free. This new pledge means that Norway has become the first country in the world to impose such a ban.

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In addition to this, any product that contributes to deforestation will not be used in the Scandinavian country. The Norwegian Parliament’s Standing Committee on Energy and Environment recommended the plan as part of the Action Plan on Nature Diversity. The main lobbying power behind this recommendation was Rainforest Foundation Norway, which has been working for years to bring the pledge to existence.

Nils Hermann Ranum, the head of the policy and campaign at the Rainforest Foundation Norway, said in a statement; “This is an important victory in the fight to protect the rainforest. Over the last few years, a number of companies have committed to cease the procurement of goods that can be linked to the destruction of the rainforest. Until now, this has not been matched by similar commitments from governments. Thus, it is highly positive that the Norwegian state is now following suit and making the same demands when it comes to public procurements.”

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Norway’s action plan to ban deforestation also includes a request from parliament that the government exercise due care for the protection of biodiversity in its investments through Norway’s Government Pension Fund Global.

“Other countries should follow Norway’s leadership, and adopt similar zero deforestation commitments,” Ranum said. “In particular, Germany and the UK must act, following their joint statement at the UN Climate Summit.”

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At the 2014 UN Climate Summit, Germany ad the UK joined Norway to ‘promote national commitments that encourage deforestation-free supply chains,’ through public procurement policies. They also committed to finding ways to sustainably source products such as palm oil, soy, and timber, as reported by the Huffington Post.

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