Saturday, December 28, 2013

Forest change

This is an amazing map overlay that shows where in the world forests have made gains or experienced losses in the period 2000-2012.

I took a look around the area where I used to live (Deux Montagnes QC) and see that a bit of forest was lost due to development of the suburbs. At least I know it's accurate, because I know these forested areas from when I was a kid. In the Laurentians, you can see the forest rebounding, probably due to replanting.

In Alberta, in general, there seems to be equal parts loss and gain, which is good. The loss seems much more dramatic in BC. If you zoom out and just focus on the loss, it seems really bad, especially across northern Canada. But if you look at gains, it seems to even it out. I'd like to know if that loss is due to natural causes as well, or just cutting.

There's a tremendous amount of loss in California, likely due to fires. Japan has more tree cover than I would have thought and seems to be doing a great job of managing loss. Ireland seems to be aggressively growing new forests.

(Red=loss; blue=gain; purple=both; green=forest)

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