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🌳 African countries use satellites to reduce deforestation

🌳 African countries use satellites to reduce deforestation

In just two years African nations have been able to reduce deforestation with 18%, all thanks to a satellite monitoring system created by GLAD.

Linn Winge
Linn Winge

Between 6 to 17 percent of all carbon emissions each year are caused by deforestation. World Resources Institute writes that tropical rainforest deforestation is responsible for more CO2 emissions than the entire EU combined. Luckily there is a way to combat the issue. A subscription service called Global Forest Watch, designed by GLAD - the Global Land Analysis and Discovery system. The system has helped African countries combat deforestation, reducing it with 18%.

Subscribing to Global Forest Watch is free of charge. Nations that are concerned about maintaining their forests can sign up for the satellite monitoring service and receive alerts on regions in need for greater levels of forestation and/or ecological preservation and protection.

Avoiding deforestation is considerably more effective at reducing carbon emissions than replanting and regrowing forests. Why? Because the older the tree is the greater its potential to store CO2. By maintaining and protecting forests and ecosystems already existing, countries will give themselves a more sustainable and eco-friendly future. Also, they will save tons of money in combating carbon emissions in the present.

Fanny Moffette, a PhD researcher at the Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies and the Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics at the University of Wisconsin-Madison said to Green Matters:

"Now that we know subscribers of alerts can have an effect on deforestation, there are potential ways in which our work can improve the training they receive and support their efforts."

She also said that researchers who have seen the data seem excited at the prospect of implementing GLAD on a larger scale and further empowering areas that use the data in meaningful, actionable ways.