Eco Bill Seeks To Protect Deforested Areas

The bill aims to reduce the number of goods sourced from protected land.

The Environment Bill 2019-21 has been up for debate for some time and now an amendment has been added to include blocking imports of ecologically damaging goods including soya, palm oil, rubber, cocoa and timber.

Now enacted to be enshrined in UK law, businesses must ensure goods they stock are ethical and environmentally friendly.

Illegal land clearing accounts for approximately 50% of deforestation and destroys important habitats that are home to many species of animal. Trees also sequester large amounts of carbon and cutting them down releases incredible amounts that contrbute towards co2 emissions.

Palm oil, one of several commodities to be banned is used in many food products including shampoos, chocolate and cosmetic products.

One area the bill could put a focus on is the chocolate industry, where dense woodland is deforested to hide slave labour in countries that include Ivory Coast and Ghana to evade detection.

It remains to be seen how far the bill will go as suppliers can redirect goods through other supply chains, and we are yet to learn tariffs for fines, as well as the consequences for ignoring the new law.

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