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OPINION: Britain's plan to stop illegal deforestation is full of holes

Britain [...] this week closed its consultation on a law that would require companies to ensure their products aren’t linked to illegal deforestation. The UK government’s focus on the issue is welcome, but the proposal it has put forward is marred by serious failings.

For a start, it makes no reference to human rights, despite all the evidence that razing forests for agriculture is frequently accompanied by threats and violence against environmental defenders and local communities, land grabs and abusive labour practices.

Another shortcoming is that it relies on environmental laws in producer countries to determine whether products should be allowed to enter the UK.

The example of Brazil under President Jair Bolsonaro underlines just how inadequate this is...

Finally, as the legislation would not apply to financial institutions, it would not address the financial flows to companies driving deforestation. As Britain has one of the world’s most important finance sectors, regulating it might be the single most effective way the UK could reduce global forest loss...

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