Palm oil is often associated with biodiversity loss. We all know those pictures where orangutans are rescued from destroyed areas and brought to sanctuaries or translocated elsewhere. Research in Borneo led by Hutan and PONGO Alliance suggests that orangutans are actually highly adaptable and that there are other ways to protect these species and to reduce biodiversity loss and population decline in general. Creating conditions in a mixed forest and plantation landscape, in which species like the orangutan are able to live, can help protect local biodiversity. Species like the orangutans are able to adapt to plantation areas, if these are not purely monocultural systems and if wildlife corridors connect natural forest areas.
To best serve both an industry and a species that is critically endangered, PONGO Alliance engages industry with a pragmatic approach. Central to their mission is to work together to achieve collaborative solutions to create a paradigm shift in agricultural practices that reframes the oil palm industry as one that supports rather than destroys orangutan habitat.