Have I given big deforesters a ‘pass’ in audits?

Have I given big deforesters a ‘pass’ in audits?

Palm Oil Detective’s spins are sometimes clever – Athena is a trained spin doctor after all – but more often crude and libellous. Athena’s claims about me are similarly crude and libellous, and provide a damning peek into a very sick mind.

Bart Van Assen, former lead auditor for @RSPOtweets and @FSC_IC who has given big deforesters a ‘pass’ in audits‘ (archive)

Dennis, 2022 (twitter.com/palmoildetect)

This claim is yet another cheap copy-paste job by Athena, based on a conspiracy theory posted half a decade ago by Prem Pillay on the Haze Elimination Action Team (H.E.A.T.) Facebook group (see image right). It’s utter nonsense, for the following reasons:

  • I have neither worked for the FSC/RSPO nor have I worked as an FSC/RSPO lead auditor; my contracts with conformity assessment bodies concerned technical expertise supporting their lead auditor(s); and
  • FSC/RSPO set standards for the sustainable management of forests and timber/oil palm plantations; neither organisation audits against these standards, as that would be a conflict of interest.

Athena’s very malice towards palm oil results in the utterly dysfunctional conspiracy theory that a single “auditor” (read technical expert) could certify a 20,000-150,000 ha plantation or natural forest. Tweeting such nonsense firmly positions Athena on the wrong side of Hanlon’s Razor, as we’re well into the realm of malice.

Thus, Athena’s claim is banking on the public argument from ignorance that FSC and RSPO audit their own standards.

Despite having been corrected on this fallacious argument repeatedly, Athena continues to ignore the vastly different responsibilities of the FSC/RSPO, conformity assessment bodies and accreditation bodies. She also shows no interest at all in any proper due diligence on her sources, and will simply run with any false narrative that suits her propaganda.

an auditor for @FSC_IC and @RSPOtweets‘ (archive)
Bart [van] Assen … has given Musim Mas a pass during his RSPO assessment of them‘ (archive)

Read more here: Savage Nobles – Palm Oil Detectives

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