By European Commission Joint Research Centre
Future expansion of the palm oil industry could have a dramatic impact on African primates, according to the findings of a new study led by the Joint Research Centre, the European Commission’s science and knowledge service. The study has been published today in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS). Scientists found only a few small ‘areas of compromise’ in Africa with a high suitability for oil palm cultivation and a low potential impact on the primate species living there. These areas totalled 0.13 million hectares (Mha), which is less than 0.005 % of the total land mass of the African continent.