Amazonia Deforestation from Sentinels

The Amazon rainforest represents over half of the planet’s remaining equatorial forests. A real Earth’s hearth and lungs threatened by the human uncontrolled activity.

Its deforestation started mainly in the early seventies after the opening of the trans-Amazonian highway (1972). Amongst the principal causes of the progressive logging, the farming and cattle pasture spaces needs are the most important.

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Sentinel-1 Images mapping the logging close to Porto Velho, Brazil

Since 1970, scientists estimate that Amazon forest lost ~20% of its original coverage, loosing on average every year a surface bigger than the Cyprus Island (10.000 km²).

Although the annual rate of forest loss has recently slowed down. In the 2015 nearly 6.000 km² disappeared, a surface bigger than 2 times Luxembourg country.

Sentinel-2A Images mapping the logging close to Porto Velho, Brazil

Copernicus Sentinel data is providing an unprecedented mean to scientists and local authorities to rapidly map the areas affected by the illegal cutting, nevertheless satellite images show a continuous deforestation both over Brazil and Bolivia amazon areas.

Sentinel-2A images showing an intense and progressive deforestation in Bolivia. The images have been acquired two years apart.

A curiosity: googling the word “Amazon” the first result concerning the forest is located at the 20th page. This is weird, but probably in the future we will order also the air necessary to breathe on the famous homonymous e-commerce provider…

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