Economic and Policy Analysis of Climate Change
©FAO/Ami Vitale

Impacts on GHG emissions of the expansion of palm tree plantations in Colombia

Palm oil is one of the major industries in the country, having applications in the food and pharmaceutics industry. Currently, it is mainly transformed into biodiesel. Biodiesel is promoted as a clean fuel whose emissions during burning are compensated by the carbon stored during the cultivation of palm trees.

The country’s objective is to achieve a B20 level (20% biodiesel – 80% diesel) by 2020. The national palm oil production will therefore have to increase, as well as the surface of palm tree plantations.

The following case study calculates the impact on GHG emissions of the expansion of palm oil cultivation across the four main producing Colombian regions.