Hi. My name is Romina Persi and welcome back to Earth from Space Today, the Copernicus Sentinel-2 mission takes us over the palm oil plantations in
East Kalimantan the Indonesian part of the island Borneo Palm oil is the most widely-produced tropical edible oil It’s used in a vast array of products from ice cream and chocolates to cosmetics such as make up and soap to biofuel Not only is it versatile palm oil is also a uniquely productive crop Harvested all year-round oil palm trees produce up to nine times more oil per unit area than other major oil crops To meet global demand palm oil trees are grown on vast industrial plantations leading to acres of rainforest being cut down Between 1980 and 2014 global palm oil production increased from
4.5 million tonnes to 70 million tonnes and is only expected to increase Indonesia is the largest producer of palm oil followed by Malaysia Together they account for 84% of the world’s palm oil production To produce palm oil in large enough quantities to meet growing demand farmers clear large areas of tropical rainforest to make room for palm plantations This leads to a loss of habitat for species
such as the orangutan declared as critically endangered by the WWF In general, burning forests to make room for the crop is also a major source of greenhouse gas emissions In this image the various stages of the deforestation process
are clearly visible the green patches in the plantations are the well-established palm oil farms while the light brown patches show the newly-harvested land The surrounding lush rainforest is visible in dark green The Copernicus Sentinel-2 is a two-satellite mission used mostly to track changes in the way land
is being used as well as monitoring the health of vegetation Each satellite carries a high-resolution camera that images Earth’s surface in 13 spectral bands And that’s all for this week I’m Romina Persi from ESA web TV studios thanks for watching!