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The growth of the palm oil industry has transformed part of the tropical rain forest of Papua, Indonesia, into gridded blocks of palm oil plantations. Indonesia produces a little over half of the world’s palm oil. Together, Indonesia and Malaysia produce 87% of the world’s palm oil.

Palm oil is used in about half of all consumer goods. It is found in cooking oil, soap, food additives, and myriad other products. You have almost certainly used palm oil recently probably without knowing it.

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Nov. 20, 1990, Landsat 5 (path/row 100/65) — Papua, Indonesia
Oct. 28, 2002, Landsat 7 (path/row 100/65) — Papua, Indonesia
Jan. 19, 2007, Landsat 5 (path/row 100/65) — Papua, Indonesia
Apr. 4, 2011, Landsat 5 (path/row 100/65) — Papua, Indonesia
Feb. 7, 2014, Landsat 8 (path/row 100/65) — Papua, Indonesia
Jan. 25, 2015, Landsat 8 (path/row 100/65) — Papua, Indonesia
Sep. 22, 2015, Landsat 8 (path/row 100/65) — Papua, Indonesia
Mar. 19, 2017, Landsat 8 (path/row 100/65) — Papua, Indonesia
Aug. 18, 2020, Landsat 8 (path/row 100/65) — Papua, Indonesia
Feb. 13, 2022, Landsat 8 (path/row 100/65) — Papua, Indonesia

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References

Agriculture Corner, 2012, Top ten palm oil producers 2012: Agriculture Corner Web page available at http://www.agricorner.com/top-ten-palm-oil-producers-2012. (Accessed April 16, 2013.)

Chestney, N., 2013, Growing palm oil could speed up climate change, study says: Reuters, available online at http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/01/31/us-palmoil-climate-idUSBRE90U0CR20130131. (Accessed April 16, 2013.)

Collins, J., 2008, The new threat to West Papua’s forests—Oil Palm Plantations: Sydney, Australia West Papua Association, available online at http://sydney.edu.au/arts/peace_conflict/docs/Papua_Desk_the_New_threat_to_West_Papua_forests_Oil_Palm.pdf. (Accessed April 16, 2013.)

Dean, A., 2012, Stanford researcher distills threats and benefits of Indonesia's palm oil revolution: Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment, available online at https://fse.fsi.stanford.edu/news/stanford_researcher_distills_threats_and_benefits_of_indonesias_palm_oil_revolution_20120726. (Accessed April 16, 2013.)

Martin, B., 2012, Palm oil—the hidden ingredient causing an ecological disaster: Ecologist Web page at http://www.theecologist.org/green_green_living/home/1273788/palm_oil_the_hidden_ingredient_causing_an_ecological_disaster.html. (Accessed April 16, 2013.)

Obidzinski, K., Andriani, R., Komarudin, H., and Andrianto, A., 2012, Environmental and social impacts of oil palm plantations and their implications for biofuel production in Indonesia: Ecology and Society, v. 17, no. 1. (Also available online at http://www.ecologyandsociety.org/vol17/iss1/art25.)

Rainforest Action Network, 2011, Problem with palm oil Factsheet: Rainforest Action Network Web page at http://ran.org/problem-palm-oil-factsheet. (Accessed April 16, 2013.)

UNEP, 2004, Analyzing environmental trends using satellite data—selected cases: Nairobi, Kenya, United Nations Environment Programme, available online at https://na.unep.net/siouxfalls/publications/Analyzing_Environment.pdf. (Accessed April 16, 2013.)

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