The habitat of orangutan is threatened by palm oil extraction from Indonesian rainforests.I belong to the rainforests in Indonesia but circumstances forced me to come down to the concrete jungle of Mumbai in India. I am an orangutan, which means ‘person of the forest’ in Malay! Everything was fine, till some humans started destroying the forests, which my family and friends call home. All these humans want is palm oil.

These are not good times for an orangutan. There are very few of us left now. If this destruction and plundering of our home continues, all of us will be gone forever.

I found out that all the people who use and love palm oil are getting together in Mumbai. So along with a few friends I decided to attend this conference and tell all the humans there not to destroy our habitat.

Four of us entered the convention hall where the conference was taking place. It was obvious that we were uninvited, but we had to get our message across. Two of my friends started distributing leaflets and the other one unfolded the banner with me.

The moment we entered the hall, people started taking pictures. Some even laughed at us. I stood there peacefully, with a simple question for all them, “Is your brand linked to rainforest destruction?” At this time all of us were hoping that the people gathered there will do something to save our home. Then suddenly three tall security guards grabbed my neck and threw me and my friends out of the premises.

Greenpeace activits unfurled a banner questioning the delegates at the Globoil conference in Mumbai

Image: © Greenpeace/Apoorva Salkade

Our home is being destroyed and we get ill-treated for trying to save it. Orangutans like me face the threat of extinction. You probably have no idea how the fear of extinction feels.

This destruction will bring more than our extinction. Clearing rainforests will only make planet warmer. We share the planet with you and even you know this is all we have. So why are you so keen about destroying it?

Here’s a simple request for the planet and all the orangutan’s back in Indonesia, don’t destroy the forests, our home. Don’t force us to extinction. Your greed is not working well for the Earth. Stop before it’s too late for all of us.


- Pooja Tanna is a Greenpeace volunteer.