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FAO Reports on Global Forest Land Use Change From 1990-2005

FAO16 December 2012: The Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO) has released a forestry paper reporting on global forest and land use change over the period 1990 to 2005.

The report, prepared by the FAO and the European Commission Joint Research Centre (JRC) is based on the Global Forest Resources Assessment (FRA) 2010 Remote Sensing Survey and is based on Landsat satellite imagery from 1990, 2000 and 2005.

Overall, the report indicates an annual change from forest to other land use of three million hectares per year between 1990 and 2000 with the rate of loss doubling between 2000 and 2005. This loss equates to a decrease in forest land use of 1.7% over the study period.

The report emphasizes that there are significant regional disparities with Asia and North America, recording net increases in forest land use while all other regions registered losses, with the greatest losses occurring in South America. Furthermore the report reveals that the rate of loss within tropical forests was 2.5 times higher than all other forest types. [Publication: Global Forest and Land Use Change 1990-2005]