Ecological impacts of upstream oil palm plantations on birds and primates in peninsular Malaysia

Badrul Azhar Sharif

The establishment of commercial oil palm cultivation areas has caused massive tropical deforestation in Southeast Asia. Palm oil industry is perceived as the main threat to biodiversity despite being portrayed as sustainable producer of palm oil and bio-fuel. Certification process for sustainable palm oil production i.e. the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil or RSPO was launched in 2004 but has been lacking in scientific data to support the assessment criteria. Yet, few ecological studies have been conducted by scientists to study the impacts of the industry. The main purpose of this study was to quantify the ecological impacts of the palm oil industry on bird and mammal diversity.