© 2017

The Politics of Palm Oil Harm

A Green Criminological Perspective


Part of the Palgrave Studies in Green Criminology book series (PSGC)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xi
  2. Hanneke Mol
    Pages 1-32
  3. Hanneke Mol
    Pages 91-122
  4. Hanneke Mol
    Pages 123-160
  5. Hanneke Mol
    Pages 161-206
  6. Back Matter
    Pages 229-245

About this book


This book examines the politics of harm in the context of palm oil production in Colombia, with a primary focus on the Pacific coast region. Globally, the palm oil industry is associated with practices that fit the most conventional definitions and perceptions of crime, but also crucially, forms of social and environmental harm that do not fit strictly legalistic definitions and understandings of crime. Drawing on rich field-based data from the region, Mol contributes empirically to an awareness of the constructions, practices, and the lived and perceived realities of harm related to palm oil production. She advances criminological debate around ‘harm’ by putting forward a theoretical and analytical approach that redirects the debate from a central concern with the academic contestedness of harm within criminology, towards a focus on the ‘on-the-ground’ contestedness of palm oil-related harm in Colombia. Detailed analysis and arresting conclusions ensure this book will be of great interest to students and scholars in the fields of Green and Critical Criminology, Environmental Sociology, and International and Critical Development Studies.


Environmental harm NGOs Power Criminology Criminal Justice Law Policy Environmental studies Illegal harm Green Criminology Colombia South America

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Northumbria UniversityNewcastle upon TyneUnited Kingdom

About the authors

Hanneke Mol is a Research Fellow in Environmental Justice at Northumbria University, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK. She is co-editor of the books: Environmental Crime in Latin America: The Theft of Nature and the Poisoning of the Land (Palgrave, 2017) and Introducción a la Criminología Verde: Conceptos para nuevos horizontes y diálogos socioambientales (Fondo Editorial de la Universidad Antonio Nariño, 2017).

Bibliographic information


“This book is essential reading for any understanding of one of the biggest challenges to the world’s ecological sustainability. … this book remains a critical and central basis for understanding palm oil, from its globalized power to its local harms.” (Mark Ungar, Criminal Law and Criminal Justice, July, 2019)