Palm oil and a host of biodiesel fuels is an alternative source of oil. The dwindling of oil supplies, political uncertainties in the Middle East and turbulent market oil prices demand for affordable, environmentally friendly, and renewable oil sources. Palm oil is an ingredient for bio-fuels and is burnt in power stations to produce electricity. However, a number of questions concerning the advantages to using palm oil for bio-fuel remain unanswered.
After watching the movie "Renacimiento," I still believe that advantages of palm oil as a source of bio-fuel still overweigh the fears projected. Analyzed from the perspectives of affordability, environmental impact, renewability, and biodegradability, palm oil remains one significant path to solving the global oil crises. Whereas I know this position goes against the theme of the movie, I strongly believe that growing oil palm trees in plantations to obtain biodiesel fuel to help cut dependence on oil and to cut vehicle CO2 emissions is important enough to justify burning and clearing some rain forests.
The increasing human population, over-exploitation of natural resources, and limitations of fossil makes palm oil bio-fuel a desirable alternative despite concerns raised on impacts on rain forests. On affordability, fossil fuels remain expensive sources of energy that cannot meet the increasing levels in demand. Palm oil on the other hand is a cheaper source of oil (Adnan, 2009). In addition to the above, fossil fuels not only take millions of years to form, they are also are non-renewable and will be exhausted. The last advantage of palm oil is biodegradability.
Whereas strong opinion demonstrates that, the expansion of palm oil trees is threatening the very existence of rain forests, insisting on reliance on fossil fuels is in fact more dangerous to the humanity . Pollution from industrial emissions from burnt fossil fuels is a major contributor to environmental degradation such as global warming. This is because dangerous gases emitted into the atmosphere because of burning of fossil fuels by cars. In fact, the earth's temperature is on the rise and the contributions of car and industrial emissions are significant.
As the earth is getter hotter and hotter, disasters such as hurricanes, tornadoes, droughts, and floods become more frequent, continue kill thousands every year, and destroy properties worth billions of dollars. The path to the reduction of these negative environmental consequences must revolve around reduction of CO2 emissions. According to ref "Fuel powered conventional motor vehicles produce much higher levels of carbon dioxide (Co2) carbon monoxide (Co), nitrogen oxides (Nox) and hydrocarbons (Hc) and this from the primary source of these dangerous pollutants".
In addition to the above, carbon dioxide (C02) is considered one of the major atmospheric pollutants, and is solely responsible for approximately 57% global warming (Maslin, 2007). Negative effects of global warming include the rapidly declining numbers of polar bears and melting of ice in the tropics (Maslin, 2007). It is therefore an open knowledge that releasing carbon dioxide (C02) into the atmosphere is detrimental to the lives of living organisms and the equilibrium of the ecosystem.
The case of Malaysia illustrates the impact of palm oil cultivation on natural forest. It is a fact that the natural environmental that constitute the biodiversity is under threat from increase in the acreage of palm oil. Deforestation in Borneo areas that is characterized by loss of critical cover and logging remains some of the greatest environmental impacts Malaysia has to face in the future (Maslin, 2007). The increase in the demand for palm oil will definitely push the transmigrated communities to clear forests and cultivate palm oil. However, the justification on the impacts reliance on fossil fuels in the pretext protecting rain forests in not only a weak assertion but is also a pointer to failure in recognizing potential dangers faced by humanity.