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Deforestation Stats

Deforestation figures, statistics, tables, and charts.

Deforestation figures and charts
  • Tropical Deforestation Rates [sortable]
  • Primary Forest Deforestation Rates [sortable]
  • Country by Country Deforestation Rates
  • Amazon Deforestation in Brazil
  • Deforestation Pictures
  • Deforestation estimates

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  • This web site has thousands of pages on deforestation. You may also be interested in An Overview of Deforestation, deforestation pictures, and current deforestation news blog. There is also a section that explains deforestation to children.



    Using these charts and graphs.
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    Deforestation charts and graphics.

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    Deforestation in the Brazlian Amazon, 1988-present
    60-70 percent of deforestation in the Amazon results from cattle ranches while the rest mostly results from small-scale subsistence agriculture. Despite the widespread press attention, large-scale farming (i.e. soybeans) currently contributes relatively little to total deforestation in the Amazon. Most soybean cultivation takes place outside the rainforest in the neighboring cerrado grassland ecosystem and in areas that have already been cleared. Logging results in forest degradation but rarely direct deforestation. However, studies have showed a close correlation between logging and future clearing for settlement and farming.
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    Causes of deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon, 2000-2005
    The above pie chart showing deforestation in the Amazon by cause is based on the median figures for estimate ranges. Please note the low estimate for large-scale agriculture. Between 2000-2005 soybean cultivation reesulted in a small overall percentage of direct deforestation. Nevertheless the role of soy is quite significant in the Amazon. As explained by Dr. Philip Fearnside, "Soybean farms cause some forest clearing directly. But they have a much greater impact on deforestation by consuming cleared land, savanna, and transitional forests, thereby pushing ranchers and slash-and-burn farmers ever deeper into the forest frontier. Soybean farming also provides a key economic and political impetus for new highways and infrastructure projects, which accelerate deforestation by other actors."
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    Tropical deforestation rates from 2000-2005
    Tropical deforestation rates from 2000-2005, ranked in decending order by the highest amount of average annual forest loss for 25 countries based on data from the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).
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    Deforestation in Brazil, 1978-2005

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    Share of tropical deforestation, 2005-2005


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    Average annual deforestation rate in hectares, 2000-2005

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    Annual change in forest cover, 1990-2005
    Annual change in forest cover, 1990-2005, for 25 tropical countries (by area in 1000 hectares)
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    Total percent change in forest cover, 1990-2005
    Total percent change in forest cover, 1990-2005, for selected tropical countries (%)
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    Annual percentage change in forest cover, 1990-2000
    Average annual percentage change in forest cover, 1990-2000, for various tropical countries
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    Annual percentage change in forest cover, 2000-2005
    Average annual percentage change in forest cover, 2000-2005, for various tropical countries
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    Average annual reforestation rate in hectares, 2000-2005

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    Total percentage loss of primary forest, 1990-2005
    Statistics from 17 tropical countries for which the United Nations has somewhat reliable figures for primary forest cover. Total deforestation statistics typically fail to distinguish between general deforestation, reforestation through plantations, and the loss of biologically important primary forests (also called old-growth forests). Looking at primary forest loss figures for these countries reveals an alarming increase in deforestation of these endangered ecosystems.
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    Primary forest deforestation, 2000-2005
    Statistics from 17 tropical countries for which the United Nations has somewhat reliable figures for primary forest cover. Total deforestation statistics typically fail to distinguish between general deforestation, reforestation through plantations, and the loss of biologically important primary forests (also called old-growth forests). Looking at primary forest loss figures for these countries reveals an alarming increase in deforestation of these endangered ecosystems.
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    Rate of change of primary forest loss, 1990-2005
    Statistics from 17 tropical countries for which the United Nations has somewhat reliable figures for primary forest cover. Total deforestation statistics typically fail to distinguish between general deforestation, reforestation through plantations, and the loss of biologically important primary forests (also called old-growth forests). Looking at primary forest loss figures for these countries reveals an alarming increase in deforestation of these endangered ecosystems.
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    Worst deforestation rate of natural forests, 2000-2005

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    Highest deforestation of natural forests, 2000-2005. All countries.

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    Annual fire emissions from Borneo, Sumatra, and New Guinea from 2000-2006
    Data source: van der Werf et al 2008.
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    Cumulative fire emissions from Borneo, Sumatra, and New Guinea from 2000-2006
    Data source: van der Werf et al 2008.
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    National GHG emissions from industrial sources (electricity generation, transportation, buildings, etc) and LULUCF, 2000
    Note that some countries have negative emissions from LULUCF meaning they these sources are a net carbon sink. Also note that the E.U. is listed in addition to its individual member countries.
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    2003-2007 Amazon fires
    Number of fires in Brazilian Amazon states, monthly comparison for 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, and 2007 using AQUA satellite data
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    Influence of soy prices on deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon
    Influence of soy prices (CPI-adjusted, 12-month moving average) on deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon. Deforestation in the states of Mato Grosso and Para has shown a particularly strong correlation to soy prices in recent years. All figures in hectares (2.47 acres).
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    Causes of deforestation, 2000-2005
    Pie chart breakdown by source of the causes of deforestation
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    Regional deforestation
    Tropical deforestation by region
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    June-September deforestation in Brazilian Amazon states, 2006 versus 2007
    June-September deforestation in Brazilian Amazon states, 2006 versus 2007. Note that Rondônia and Amapá are excluded due to low forest loss in each year. Source: INPE
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    Fires in the Brazilian Amazon, 2003-2007
    INPE data
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    Annual Amazon deforestation by state 1988-2005
    Annual Amazon deforestation by state 1988-2005
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    Deforestation in Amazônia Legal State, Brazil, 1988-2005
    Deforestation in Amazônia Legal State, Brazil, 1988-2005 measured stated-by-state by percent share of total forest loss
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    Deforestation in Amazônia Legal State, Brazil, 1988-2005
    Deforestation in Amazônia Legal State, Brazil, 1988-2005 State-by-state contribution to total forest loss
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    Deforestation in Acre State, Brazil, 1988-2005

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    Deforestation in Amapá State, Brazil, 1988-2005

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    Deforestation in Amazonas State, Brazil, 1988-2005

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    Deforestation in Maranhão State, Brazil, 1988-2005

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    Deforestation in Mato Grosso State, Brazil, 1988-2005

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    Deforestation in Pará State, Brazil, 1988-2005

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    Deforestation in Rondônia State, Brazil, 1988-2005

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    Deforestation in Roraima State, Brazil, 1988-2005

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    Deforestation in Tocantins State, Brazil, 1988-2005

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    Average annual deforestation rate in Kalimantan (Indonesian Borneo), 1985-2002

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    Remaining forest cover in Borneo, 1985 and 2002

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    Forest cover in Borneo, 1985-2020

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    Development of cleared land in Kalimantan, 1985-1997
    Results of Forest Conversion. Derived from figures found in WWF 2005 and based on data from The World Bank: Indonesia: Environment and Natural Resource Management in a Time of Transitio, February 2001
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    Forest cover in provinces of Kalimantan.

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    FOREST COVER
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    Forest cover and biomes in the Amazon region of South America

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    Forest cover per capita
    Tropical countries with the highest amount of forest per capita in 2005 based on data from the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).
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    2005 total forest cover for tropical countries
    2005 total forest cover for tropical countries, ranked in descending order
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    2005 percent forest cover for tropical countries
    2005 percent forest cover for tropical countries, ranked in descending order
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    Total area of primary forest cover, 2005
    Statistics from 17 tropical countries for which the United Nations has somewhat reliable figures for primary forest cover. Total deforestation statistics typically fail to distinguish between general deforestation, reforestation through plantations, and the loss of biologically important primary forests (also called old-growth forests). Looking at primary forest loss figures for these countries reveals an alarming increase in deforestation of these endangered ecosystems.
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    Chart showing percentage cover of world forests. Rainforests are a subsection of "Tropical forests".

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    Forest cover in Borneo, 1985-2020

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    Borneo Forest Cover, 2000

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    Borneo Forest Cover, 2005

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    Borneo Forest Cover, 2010

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    Borneo Forest Cover, 2020

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    Borneo Forest Cover, 1985

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    Global forest cover 2005, by country

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    BIODIVERSITY

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    Number of animals killed in the bushmeat trade

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    Estimated number of animals hunted annually in the Amazon, Brazilian Amazon, West Africa, Central Africa, and Southeast Asia

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    Amazon biomass distribution, by vegetation type
    The biomass range (metric tons per hectare) for general vegetation types in the Amazon Basin. The authors report the following distribution of vegetation category for the basin: Old growth terra firme forest (62.3% of the legal Amazon [(8 235 430 sq km]); Floodplain and inundated forest (4.19%); Secondary forest (1.67%); Woodland savanna (24.47%); and Grass/shrub savanna (4.79%). The authors report average biomass ranges as follows: Dense forest 272.5 Mt/ha, Open forest 200.2 Mt/ha, Bamboo forest 212.3 Mt/ha, Liana/dry forest 189.7 Mt/ha, Seasonal/deciduous forest 225.6 Mt/ha, and Varzea flooded forest 248.3 Mt/ha. Image produced by Rhett A. Butler using data from the authors.
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    Countries with the highest number of extinct species according to IUCN Red List data

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    Countries with the highest number of threatened species according to IUCN Red List data

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    Threatened species in the United States

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    Countries with the highest percentage of threatened species according to the IUCN Red List
    Countries with the highest percentage of threatened species [(extinct+endangered+vulnerable)/(total assessed species-data deficient species)] derived from IUCN 2006 data. The United States ranks sixth at 41 percent, New Zeland ninth (34%), Madagascar tenth (34%), Australia fourteenth (32%), and Japan 31st (23%).
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    Countries with the highest number of threatened species
    Countries with the highest number of threatened species according to 2006 IUCN Red List data. The chart includes species listed as Critically Endangered (CR), Endangered (EN) or Vulnerable (VU) by IUCN and lists mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, fishes, mollusks, other invertebrates, and plants in the totals.
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    Percent of amphibians threatened with extinction according to IUCN

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    Percent of mammals threatened with extinction according to IUCN

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    Percent of plants threatened with extinction according to IUCN

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    Percent of fish threatened with extinction according to IUCN

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    Percent of birds threatened with extinction according to IUCN

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    Percent of reptiles threatened with extinction according to IUCN

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    AGRICULTURE

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    Chart showing annual palm oil production by Malaysia and Indonesia from 1964-2006.

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    Soy expansion in the Brazilian Amazon, 1990-2005
    Total deforestation and area of soybean cultivation across states in the Brazilian Amazon. Overall soybean cultivation makes up only a small portion of deforestation, though its role is accelerating. Further, soybean expansion and the associated infrastructure development and farmer displacement is driving deforestation by other actors. Note: some soybean farms are established on already degraded rainforest lands and neighboring cerrado ecosystems. Therefore it would be inappropriate to assume the area of soybean planting represents its actual role in deforestation.
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    Soy expansion and deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon, 1990-2005
    Annual deforestation rates and annual soy expansion for states in the Brazilian Amazon 1990-2005. Note that the 1995-1996 and 1998-1999 years were negative and do not show up on the chart. Graphs based on Brazilian government data.
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    Projected soybean exports for the U.S. and Brazil, 2004-2015

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    Chart showing annual palm oil production and exports by Malaysia and Indonesia from 1964-2006.

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    Soy acreage expansion in the Brazilian Amazon compared with the soy price
    Soy acreage expansion in the Brazilian Amazon compared with the price of soybeans (CPI-adjusted, 12-month moving average). All figures in hectares.
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    Influence of live cattle prices on deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon
    Influence of live cattle prices (CPI-adjusted, 12-month moving average) on deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon. While nearly two-thirds of Amazon clearing can be attributed to conversion for cattle pasture, deforestation in the states of Mato Grosso and Para has shown a only a slight correlation to cattle prices in recent years. This could be due, in part, to the use of cattle pasture for land speculation (land prices are rising faster than the value of cattle) and as a hedge against inflation and currency fluctuation. All figures in hectares (2.47 acres).
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    Annual soy prices, cattle prices, and deforestation in the Amazon
    The recent surge in soy and cattle prices could be driving an increase in forest fires. Annual deforestation figures for the 2007-2008 year will not be released until August of 2008, though new data for the 2007 burning season should be available by the end of the year.
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    Soy price, 1990-2007
    Soy price, 1990-2007. Nominal and CPI-adjusted
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    Live cattle price, 1990-2007
    Live cattle price, 1990-2007. Nominal and CPI-adjusted
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    Chart showing annual palm oil production and exports for Malaysia from 1964-2006.

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    Chart showing annual palm oil production and exports for Indonesia from 1964-2006.

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    Growth of oil palm cultivation in Kalimantan and Malaysian Borneo.

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    Cattle production in Brazil, 1977-2007

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    Production and total supply of cattle in Brazil, 1960-2007

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    Soybean oil crush in Brazil, 1981-2006

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    Sugar cane production & export for Brazil, 1960-2006

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    World soybean production, 1980-2003

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    Soy and corn acreage planted and projected in the United States

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    Soy and corn acreage planted and projected in the United States

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    Forecast world soy trade market share for the U.S. and Brazil, 2004-2016

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    World soybean exports, 1990-2015

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    Net present value of various land use options in the Amazon
    Carbon offsets versus other types of land use in the Amazon rain forest.
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    Potential NPV of income from various types of land use in the Amazon
    Carbon offsets versus other types of land use in the Amazon rain forest.
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    Potential annual earnings from Avoided Deforestation
    Potential earnings from avoided deforestation, based on annual rate of forest loss in selected countries from 2000 to 2005 and average carbon storage values from FAO. Carbon is assumed to be priced at $5 per metric ton of carbon dioxide equivalent.
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    Biofuel production costs and lifecycle emissions reduction
    Sugarcane, corn, wheat, sugar beets (ethanol); gasoline; diesel; palm oil, rapeseed oil, soybean oil
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    Greenhouse gas emissions resulting from Land Use, Land-Use Change and Forestry (LULUCF)
    LULUCF includes deforestation and forest degradation. The REDD mechanism seeks to reduce these emissions by compensating tropical countries for conserving their forests.
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    National GHG emissions from industrial sources (electricity generation, transportation, buildings, etc) and LULUCF, 2000
    Note that some countries have negative emissions from LULUCF meaning they these sources are a net carbon sink. Also note that the E.U. is listed in addition to its individual member countries.
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    Share of GHG emissions resulting from LULUCF in the year 2000
    This chart includes on the 100 top emitting countries.
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    National GHG emissions from industrial sources (electricity generation, transportation, buildings, etc) and LULUCF, 2000
    Note that some countries have negative emissions from LULUCF meaning they these sources are a net carbon sink. Also note that the E.U. is listed in addition to its individual member countries.
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    Climate change and energy charts are available at Climate change and energy charts




    Continued: Deforestation Threats from Humankind


    Other pages in this section:

    A World Imperilled
    Threats from Humankind
    Economic Restructuring
    Logging
    Fires
    Commercial Agriculture
    Hydro, Pollution, Hunting
    Debt
    Consumption, Conclusion
    - - - - -
    References
    References
    References
    References
    References
    Natural forces
    Subsistence Activities
    Oil Extraction
    Mining
    War
    Cattle Pasture
    Fuelwood, Roads, Climate
    Population & Poverty

    - - - - -
    Kids version of this section
    - Why are rainforests disappearing?
    - Logging
    - Agriculture
    - Cattle
    - Roads
    - Poverty


    Selection of information sources








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    Copyright Rhett Butler 1994-2013

    Carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions generated from mongabay.com operations (server, data transfer, travel) are mitigated through an association with Anthrotect,
    an organization working with Afro-indigenous and Embera communities to protect forests in Colombia's Darien region.
    Anthrotect is protecting the habitat of mongabay's mascot: the scale-crested pygmy tyrant.

    "Rainforest" is used interchangeably with "rain forest" on this site. "Jungle" is generally not used.