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Largest area of tropical forest, by country


By Rhett Butler   |  Last updated January 11, 2016

Deforestation data can be highly contentious due to variances in how forest cover is measured, how deforestation is defined, and whether or not forest regrowth and plantations are incorporated. Here are two estimates on forest loss from different sources.

Gross forest loss

This table below show gross forest loss from a data set developed by researchers led by the University of Maryland's Matthew Hansen. Gross forest loss includes all sources of forest loss from clearing of natural forest to cyclical harvesting of plantations. For that reason, "forest loss" may not accurately reflect deforestation in countries with high plantation cover. For example, roughly 25 percent of Vietnam's tree cover is plantations, meaning that harvesting of industrial timber plantations shows up as "forest loss".

Country30% forest coverPercent forest cover5-year Forest loss (2010-2014)Loss as % of 2009 cover10-year Forest loss 2005-2014Loss as % of 2004 cover5-yr vs 10-yr changeLoss 2001-2014
Brazil519,191,66461.90%11,738,6372.40%24,986,0284.90%-6.00%38,336,733
Democratic Republic of the Congo199,224,29587.10%3,891,7402.00%6,332,6193.20%22.90%7,977,010
Indonesia160,978,09685.80%7,718,1135.10%15,069,6539.60%2.40%18,507,771
Colombia81,779,08372.60%918,3791.10%2,035,0002.50%-9.70%2,822,694
Peru78,069,51660.90%935,9811.20%1,608,2222.10%16.40%1,949,886
Bolivia64,520,86260.00%1,455,8352.30%2,707,9714.20%7.50%3,394,108
Venezuela56,531,45062.80%426,4540.80%984,2401.80%-13.30%1,376,709
Angola55,315,47444.40%868,2411.60%1,453,8542.60%19.40%1,740,011
Mexico53,182,95227.40%878,0171.70%1,948,1253.70%-9.90%2,587,661
Central African Republic47,070,87076.00%248,2240.50%452,8791.00%9.60%546,921
Papua New Guinea42,940,88893.40%335,4080.80%600,2981.40%11.70%781,082
Myanmar42,859,26064.60%1,038,3852.50%1,739,7824.10%19.40%2,030,101
India38,813,95312.40%428,0471.10%796,8132.10%7.40%1,034,010
Cameroon31,467,69268.00%362,3831.20%540,6991.70%34.00%657,057
Malaysia29,415,65089.90%2,347,5539.00%4,452,51715.80%5.40%5,632,714
Mozambique28,907,58737.30%810,6922.90%1,694,0335.90%-4.30%2,048,679
Tanzania26,423,10329.80%774,3013.00%1,380,6995.30%12.20%1,699,305
Republic of Congo26,386,12077.90%218,6720.80%325,8641.20%34.20%409,526
Gabon24,698,65994.40%132,4910.50%221,6310.90%19.60%277,413
Paraguay24,296,59161.30%2,033,9279.30%3,600,57615.40%13.00%4,460,595
Zambia24,088,37432.70%542,4442.30%878,2723.70%23.50%1,025,306
Thailand19,962,44339.40%530,9972.80%1,020,5675.20%4.10%1,267,835
Laos19,118,74383.90%842,1104.60%1,392,1127.40%21.00%1,635,813
Ecuador19,064,82075.00%225,1811.20%472,0682.50%-4.60%598,816
Guyana18,995,49191.00%46,7750.20%81,5180.40%14.80%107,866
Philippines18,600,33563.60%336,6661.90%609,9673.30%10.40%761,175
Madagascar17,140,68829.10%1,015,8256.30%1,629,1069.70%24.70%1,971,473
Vietnam16,577,66151.30%782,9244.90%1,290,4847.90%21.30%1,504,547
Cote d'Ivoire14,872,64446.60%758,2385.40%1,248,6348.60%21.50%1,650,236
Suriname13,949,66396.60%55,1020.40%80,5170.60%36.90%97,893
Ethiopia12,040,79210.70%136,3781.10%243,2482.00%12.10%295,611
Nigeria10,030,68611.10%218,4672.20%335,2523.40%30.30%439,032
Liberia9,384,70498.20%394,3344.30%597,4696.40%32.00%711,477
Cambodia8,810,80049.60%939,46711.50%1,366,81715.90%37.50%1,586,252
French Guiana8,162,64798.90%22,2310.30%39,0200.50%13.90%51,244
Guinea8,159,12833.50%300,7603.80%409,3345.10%47.00%483,224
Nicaragua7,776,95065.60%394,6235.40%754,0619.90%4.70%920,393
Uganda7,768,51037.80%214,8972.80%369,3834.80%16.40%439,968
Honduras7,740,00769.40%219,2023.00%438,5305.80%0.00%572,519
Guatemala7,693,75371.30%288,1064.10%732,1719.90%-21.30%995,707
Ghana6,955,60929.90%267,1084.00%451,8656.70%18.20%616,484
Panama5,699,91976.80%80,1501.50%224,3584.00%-28.60%289,942
Sierra Leone5,617,47778.00%342,6506.30%451,3988.10%51.80%498,424
Nepal5,160,83435.00%12,0870.20%30,0810.60%-19.60%38,505
Cuba4,013,55736.80%45,3551.20%111,7122.80%-18.80%174,221
Sri Lanka3,940,05860.50%53,8191.40%96,9482.50%11.00%112,884
Costa Rica3,912,90776.80%50,8181.30%133,2283.40%-23.70%180,006
Kenya3,317,3835.80%84,0492.70%180,4565.60%-6.80%250,306
Solomon Islands2,736,45898.00%42,2021.60%73,6662.70%14.60%85,617
Equatorial Guinea2,659,05699.10%41,7821.60%58,3332.20%43.30%67,303
Bhutan2,580,57164.60%7,6940.30%11,5580.40%33.10%13,643
Dominican Republic2,576,58553.90%67,8302.80%157,9716.30%-14.10%209,756
Bangladesh1,959,60115.10%29,5291.50%54,0262.80%9.30%69,122
Belize1,748,54480.90%78,5494.70%121,6667.10%29.10%154,508
Fiji1,582,74786.80%9,9590.60%19,8251.30%0.50%25,279
Malawi1,521,89516.20%50,8333.50%87,0905.80%16.70%106,593
New Caledonia1,440,56677.00%6,2110.40%12,2900.90%1.10%16,009
Zimbabwe1,414,1603.70%47,2973.60%108,0667.80%-12.50%140,022
Vanuatu1,182,55198.00%2,8040.20%4,6890.40%19.60%5,830
Guinea-Bissau1,068,75432.30%43,6964.20%66,8906.30%30.70%79,883
El Salvador988,93448.90%12,5231.30%33,6003.50%-25.50%58,305
Haiti857,98931.90%15,1001.80%25,0292.90%20.70%33,070
Jamaica768,47170.10%11,0021.50%28,2323.70%-22.10%36,057
East Timor726,03248.70%5,8770.80%15,1402.10%-22.40%20,174
Togo558,9929.80%8,4621.60%22,1434.00%-23.60%31,755
Burundi538,38921.60%6,7001.30%12,7742.40%4.90%17,120
Brunei527,81392.20%8,0451.60%15,3702.90%4.70%19,700
Puerto Rico523,66558.80%3,8860.80%9,6221.90%-19.20%14,561
Rwanda496,55320.80%9,2531.90%14,7283.00%25.70%19,357
Chad409,4370.30%8,7392.20%17,6064.30%-0.70%21,048
Trinidad and Tobago391,86976.40%6,6031.70%13,3433.40%-1.00%17,359
Bahamas303,56625.80%3,4551.20%9,2993.10%-25.70%11,296
Benin168,5051.50%6,5374.60%19,99312.70%-34.60%31,382
Comoros134,78981.90%3,2242.40%3,5492.60%81.70%3,694
Guadeloupe94,72958.00%8480.90%1,5441.60%9.80%2,184
Martinique74,64067.50%8241.10%1,7532.40%-6.00%2,450
Mauritius71,27738.40%1,4142.00%2,2933.30%23.30%3,052
Dominica70,92294.60%3150.40%6010.80%5.00%742
Saint Lucia50,73384.00%3060.60%6171.20%-1.00%719
Palau41,16390.20%2060.50%4701.10%-12.20%645
Senegal39,9370.20%1,0412.70%1,7734.50%17.50%2,176
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines29,14675.20%1450.50%2670.90%8.60%313
Grenada28,57280.90%3461.30%6512.30%6.30%1,452
Antigua and Barbuda19,32846.10%1220.60%3882.00%-37.30%473
US Virgin Islands19,00954.40%1460.80%3912.10%-25.50%608
Singapore18,76829.40%2761.50%7013.80%-21.40%922
Sao Tome and Principe14,20788.50% - 0.00% - 0.00%#DIV/0!77
Cayman Islands13,44851.50%1150.90%2221.70%3.30%302
Saint Kitts and Nevis13,25650.70%500.40%1591.20%-36.40%281
Turks and Caicos Islands10,84512.40%940.90%3613.30%-47.90%395
British Virgin Islands7,45348.70%230.30%480.60%-2.90%60
Cape Verde7,3531.90%400.60%600.80%33.00%100
Seychelles6,20436.10%40.10%40.10%78.90%5
Micronesia6,17769.50%771.20%771.20%100.00%77
Maldives5,80126.50%230.40%490.80%-4.50%63
Curacao5,26212.30%170.30%360.70%-3.60%39
Barbados5,23712.10%1593.10%2324.50%37.60%267
Gambia4,5920.40%1202.90%50011.20%-51.90%622
Montserrat4,58945.90%1192.60%1783.90%33.80%197
Anguilla2,12127.10%50.20%311.50%-67.40%45


U.N. forest loss


The table below contains data from the U.N. FAO 2015 Forest Resources Assessment. Unlike the table above, units are 1,000 hectares.

Forest/land areaForest areaChange 2010-2015Change 2005-2015--
UN Forest Cover201519902000200520102015Loss/GainLoss/GainLoss/GainLoss/Gain5-yr vs 10-yr changeChange 1990-2015
Country%(1000 ha)(1000 ha)(1000 ha)(1000 ha)(1000 ha)(1000 ha)% of 2010 cover(1000 ha)% of 2005 cover%(1000 ha)
Brazil 59546705521274506734498458493538-4920-1.0%-13196-2.6%-25%-53167
Democratic Republic of the Congo67.3160363157249155692154135152578-1557-1.0%-3114-2.0%0%-7785
Indonesia5311854599409978579443291010-3422-3.6%-6847-7.0%0%-27535
Peru 57.87792176147755287481173973-838-1.1%-1555-2.1%8%-3948
India23.863939653906770969790706828921.3%29734.4%-40%6743
Mexico 346976067856670836649866040-458-0.7%-1043-1.6%-12%-3720
Colombia 52.76441761798602015863558502-133-0.2%-1699-2.8%-84%-5915
Angola 46.46097659728591045848057856-624-1.1%-1248-2.1%0%-3120
Bolivia50.66279560091587345620954764-1445-2.6%-3970-6.8%-27%-8031
Zambia65.45280051134503014946848635-833-1.7%-1666-3.3%0%-4165
Venezuela52.95202649151477134750546683-822-1.7%-1030-2.2%60%-5343
Tanzania525592051920499204792046060-1860-3.9%-3860-7.7%-4%-9860
Mozambique 48.24337841188400793897237940-1032-2.6%-2139-5.3%-4%-5438
Papua New Guinea 72.53362733600335863357333559-140.0%-27-0.1%4%-68
Myanmar44.23921834868333213177329041-2732-8.6%-4280-12.8%28%-10177
Gabon89.3220002200022000220002300010004.5%10004.5%100%1000
Congo 65.42272622556224712241122334-77-0.3%-137-0.6%12%-392
Malaysia 67.62237621591208902212422195710.3%13056.2%-89%-181
Central African Republic 35.62256022404223262224822170-78-0.4%-156-0.7%0%-390
Sudan 10.32357021826209542008219210-872-4.3%-1744-8.3%0%-4360
Laos81.317645165261687017816187619455.3%189111.2%0%1116
Guyana 841666016622166021657616526-50-0.3%-76-0.5%32%-134
Thailand 32.114005170111610016249163991500.9%2991.9%0%2394
Suriname 95.41543015391153711535115332-19-0.1%-39-0.3%-3%-98
Paraguay 38.62115719368184751695015323-1627-9.6%-3152-17.1%3%-5834
Viet Nam 47.69363117271307714128147736454.6%169613.0%-24%5410
Zimbabwe36.42216418894172591562414062-1562-10.0%-3197-18.5%-2%-8102
Ecuador 50.51463113729133351294212548-394-3.0%-787-5.9%0%-2083
Ethiopia11.415114137051300012296124992031.7%-501-3.9%-181%-2615
Madagascar21.41369213023128381255312473-80-0.6%-365-2.8%-56%-1219
Côte d’Ivoire 32.71022210328104051040310401-20.0%-40.0%0%179
Cambodia53.6129441154610731100949457-637-6.3%-1274-11.9%0%-3487
Ghana41862789099053919593371421.5%2843.1%0%710
Senegal4393488898867384738273-200-2.4%-400-4.6%0%-1075
French Guiana98.682188182816881388130-8-0.1%-38-0.5%-58%-88
Philippines 2765557027707468408040120017.5%96613.7%148%1485
Nigeria 7.717234131371108990416993-2048-22.7%-4096-36.9%0%-10241
Guinea25.972646904672465446364-180-2.8%-360-5.4%0%-900
Somalia10.182827515713167476363-384-5.7%-768-10.8%0%-1919
Burkina Faso 19.668476248594956495350-299-5.3%-599-10.1%0%-1497
Mali3.966905900550551104715-395-7.7%-790-14.4%0%-1975
Panama 62.150404867478246994617-82-1.7%-165-3.5%-1%-423
Honduras 4181366392579251924592-600-11.6%-1200-20.7%0%-3544
Kenya 7.8472435574047423044131834.3%3669.0%0%-311
Benin3957615061481145614311-250-5.5%-500-10.4%0%-1450
Liberia 43.449294629447943294179-150-3.5%-300-6.7%0%-750
Nepal 25.44817390036363636363600.0%00.0%--1181
Guatemala3347484208393837223540-182-4.9%-398-10.1%-9%-1208
Cuba30.1205824352697293232002689.1%50318.7%7%1142
Malawi33.438963567340232373147-90-2.8%-255-7.5%-29%-749
Nicaragua 25.94514381434643114311400.0%-350-10.1%-100%-1400
Sierra Leone 42.53118292228242726304431811.7%2207.8%189%-74
Costa Rica54256423762491260527561515.8%26510.6%14%192
Bhutan 72.325072606265627052755501.8%993.7%1%248
Solomon Islands 78.123242268224122132185-28-1.3%-56-2.5%0%-139
Uganda 10.447513869342927532077-676-24.6%-1352-39.4%0%-2674
Sri Lanka3322842192211821032070-33-1.6%-48-2.3%38%-214
Dominican Republic 41110514861652181719831669.1%33120.0%0%878
Guinea-Bissau 70.122162120207220221972-50-2.5%-100-4.8%0%-244
Equatorial Guinea55.918601743168516261568-58-3.6%-117-6.9%-1%-292
Bangladesh 1114941468145514421429-13-0.9%-26-1.8%0%-65
Belize 59.916161459141713911366-25-1.8%-51-3.6%-2%-250
Niger0.919451328126612041142-62-5.1%-124-9.8%0%-803
Fiji55.79539809979931017242.4%202.0%140%64
New Caledonia 45.983983983983983900.0%00.0%-0
Timor-Leste46.1966854798742686-56-7.5%-112-14.0%0%-280
Bahamas51.451551551551551500.0%00.0%-0
Puerto Rico 57.9287450463479496173.5%337.1%3%209
Gambia 48.844246147148048881.7%173.6%-6%46
Rwanda 19.5318344385446480347.6%9524.7%-28%162
Brunei Darussalam 72.141339738938038000.0%-9-2.3%-100%-33
Jamaica 31345341339337335-2-0.6%-4-1.2%0%-10
Burundi 10.7289198181253276239.1%9552.5%-52%-13
El Salvador 12.8377332309287265-22-7.7%-44-14.2%0%-112
Trinidad and Tobago 45.724123423022623483.5%41.7%300%-7
Mauritania0.2415317267242225-17-7.0%-42-15.7%-19%-190
Togo 3.5685486386287188-99-34.5%-198-51.3%0%-497
Samoa60.413017117117117100.0%00.0%-41
French Polynesia 42.35510513015515500.0%2519.2%-100%100
Haiti3.511610910510197-4-4.0%-8-7.6%0%-19
Réunion35.2878785888800.0%33.5%-100%1
Guadeloupe42.57373737271-1-1.4%-2-2.7%0%-2
Sao Tome and Principe55.8565656545400.0%-2-3.6%-100%-2
Martinique45.8494949494900.0%00.0%-0
Dominica57.85047464543-2-4.4%-3-6.5%33%-7
Seychelles88.4414141414100.0%00.0%-0
Comoros19.94945423937-2-5.1%-5-11.9%-20%-12
Saint Lucia33.32221212120-1-4.8%-1-4.8%100%-2
Singapore23.4161616161600.0%00.0%-0
Cook Islands64141515151500.0%00.0%-1