Kuala Lumpur, 19 June 2015 - A landmark scientific study which will provide a definition of high carbon stock forests, enabling oil palms to be grown more sustainably, is now open for public consultation.
The High Carbon Stock (HCS) Science Study’s draft Synthesis Report brings together independent research and discussions to date, conducted by 50 scientific experts in the fields of biomass, soil carbon, remote sensing, and socio-economics as they relate to the development of new oil palm plantations.
The methodology derived from the HCS Science Study is termed HCS+. “HCS” relates to the focus on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions which are important due to its adverse impact on global climate, and the “+” indicates that there will be opportunities for improved livelihoods created at the concession or regional scale by allowing some level of responsible conversion (with associated net GHG emissions) of land to oil palm plantations.
A wide range of stakeholders have already been consulted, and members of the scientific community, palm oil industry figures, NGOs, academia, and other interested parties are now invited to submit feedback via the HCS Study’s website, www.carbonstockstudy.com , before the end of July 2015.
The Synthesis Report provides:
All feedback from the public consultation process will be considered in the finalisation of the Synthesis Report, which is scheduled for completion in December 2015.
“In line with our commitment to transparency and inclusivity, we welcome input from all stakeholders to further strengthen our research findings. Given the high level of interest from the palm oil industry, we will also be conducting targeted peer reviews with leading experts and industry veterans to ensure our findings are based on the best available science and practical experience,” said Dr John Raison, former Chief Research Scientist at Australia’s Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) who is leading the HCS Science Study.
Chair of the Steering Committee overseeing the HCS Study, Sir Jonathon Porritt added: “We are committed to ensuring a science-based process that is independent, objective and holistic, building upon existing knowledge in this critical area of enquiry. Feedback and public scrutiny is an important part of that scientific process, in ensuring our findings meet the highest standards of scientific quality. We urge interested parties to use this opportunity to come forward with comments on our work.”
The draft Synthesis Report and information on the HCS Study is available at www.carbonstockstudy.com.
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