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Every minute the world loses an area of ​​rainforest equivalent to 10 soccer fields

On April 28, researchers said the trend of deforestation for crops and livestock has increased over the past year and warned that climate change is making the damage difficult to reverse. this.

According to an annual study by the Global Forest Monitoring Organization, the World Resources Institute (WRI) and the University of Maryland (USA), it is an estimated 11.1 million hectares tropical forest Destroyed in 2021, of which 3.75 million ha are primary forest. This means the world is losing an area of ​​forest the size of 10 football fields every minute, said WRI Forest Director Rod Taylor.

More than 40% of the rainforest destroyed last year was in Brazil, with 1.5 million hectares cut down or burned. According to WRI, last year the rate of forest destruction that is not due to wildfires but is due to causes such as deforestation for agriculture increased by 9% compared to 2020. Brazil is followed by the Democratic Republic of the Congo with almost 500,000 hectares of variable forest area. loss while deforestation in Bolivia has reached a record level of nearly 300,000 hectares.

The latest report shows that the rate of primary rainforest destruction fell by 11% in 2021 compared to the previous year as wet weather helps limit wildfires, but that figure remains high. unusually high. According to the researchers, this released 2.5 billion tons of CO2 into the atmosphere, equivalent to India’s annual emissions from fossil fuels.

Not just tropical forests, the report also shows that boreal forests in the northern hemisphere have suffered the most severe destruction in two decades. Last year’s wildfire season cost Russia 6.5 million hectares of forest, more than ever before. Researchers are concerned about the risk of a loop as wildfires produce more CO2 emissions and cause rising temperatures with the risk of wildfires.

Given the situation, analysts have urged governments to act quickly to meet their goal of ending deforestation this decade. At the 26th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP26) in November 2021, 141 world leaders committed to ending and reversing deforestation by 2030.

As most of the forest loss in 2021 occurred before countries agreed on this target, WRI believes the latest figures can be used as a benchmark to assess the effectiveness of measures. Solution. However, the researchers also warn that the annual proportion of primary forest will continue to decline significantly for the remainder of this decade and that climate change will make protecting existing forests more difficult. now.

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