Category Archives: Uncategorized

Palm oil and Nutella

Ségolène Royal, France’s ecology minister says Nutella is made using palm oil, which is contributing to deforestation, and urged Ferrero to make the spread with ‘other ingredients’. “Oil palms have replaced trees, and therefore caused considerable damage to the environment,” she explained. The full article is available here:
When I read this news, I was glad: there is an environment minister who is dedicated to protection of nature, and not only guided by political interests.
But I was wrong. The next day came the cold shower: Ségolene Royal issued her apology after the Italian company which makes Nutella said its palm oil is sourced in a responsible way.
The full article is available here:
My questions are:
– Who determines what is a responsible way?
– What palm oil can be replaced? The production of these other ingredients is polluating or not?
– Is there a list of companies that use palm oil?

Group Membership

One of our objective is to build and maintain a mutually fruitful cooperation with groups we establish some sort of partnership.

Obviously it would be beneficial for both side if group members could enjoy the ability to participate in discussions on our website and raise topics of their own interest as Members of The BA.

An important question attached to this scenario is how should we set the group membership fee in this case. Quite clearly the “one size fit for all” principle doesn’t work well, especially not in case of developing countries.

To take a specific example, several weeks ago Mr. Anandan indicated that his group, FRSD, is interested in entering into a Project Partnership with The BA. As FRSD has plenty of members it might be advantageous both for them and us if they share their views, experiences or problems on our portal and could join to discussions. Should we offer the membership for free of charge? If the “free of charge” schema is too generous, how should we find the proper fee, with which both side would be “happy”?

The East India Company: A lesson from the past?

If you’ve never read about the British Raj, you might appreciate this insightful and very well-written piece. Look at how many threads are being rewoven by mega-corporates today; dodgy politicians legislating in a pocket-filling way; environmental destruction; and a total lack of concern for human rights or local well-being. Mike


For those of us who’ve lived without electricity we find many solutions. This one is nice, and LEDs are one of the products that massively reduce power needs, add in some solar panels and  it’s a really great idea. Take heed of the statements in the article about paraffin. Mike