An expansion of biofuel crops around the world may threaten 60 million indigenous people in places like Indonesia and Malaysia, who could be driven off their lands, Al Jazeera reported the head of a UN panel as saying.
Victoria Tauli-Corpuz, chairwoman of the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues, said the explosion of biofuel crop cultivation threatened to destroy native cultures by forcing them into big cities.
Indonesia and Malaysia are among those most at risk because together they produce 80% of the world's palm oil - one of the crops used to make biofuels.
Indigenous people who depend on forests for their survival are being forced to migrate to already overcrowded cities, where many of them end up living in slums with limited access to services and poor housing, Ida Nicolaisen, an expert in indigenous cultures and member of the UN forum, said.
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