Satellite Imagery of Rainforest Deforestation

NASA has a series of great articles explaining causes of deforestation accompanied by satellite images. Below you will find links to some of these resources.

This image shows the extent of deforestation in the state of Rondonia, Brazil. Acquired by the Advance Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) on August 24, 2000, the false-color image combines near-infrared, red, and green light. Tropical rainforest appears bright red, while pale red and brown areas represent cleared land. Black and gray areas have probably been recently burned. The Jiparaná River appears blue.
Satellite image of deforestation in the Amazon region, taken from the Brazilian state of Para on July 15, 1986. The dark areas are forest, the white is deforested areas, and the gray is re-growth. The pattern of deforestation spreading along roads is obvious in the lower half of the image. Scattered larger clearings can be seen near the center of the image.

Deforestation: General Overview
Tropical Deforestation Fact Sheet - Deforestation Overview
Tropical Deforestation Fact Sheet - The Rate of Deforestation
Tropical Deforestation Fact Sheet - Deforestation and the Global Carbon Cycle
Tropical Deforestation Fact Sheet - After Deforestation

Remote Sensing
Remote Sensing Tutorial Page

Deforestation in Bolivia
Deforestation in Santa Cruz, Bolivia
Tierras Bajas Deforestation, Bolivia

Deforestation in Sumatra

Deforestation in Madagascar

Deforestation Patterns in the Amazon

Deforestation near Rio Branco, Brazil
Deforestation in Brazil
Fires and Deforestation in Brazil
Deforestation and fires in Para, Brazil
Fires and Deforestation near the Xingu River

Causes of Deforestation in the Amazon

Today deforestation in the Amazon is the result of several activities, the foremost of which include:
  1. Clearing for cattle pasture
  2. Colonization and subsequent subsistence agriculture
  3. Infrastructure improvements
  4. Commercial agriculture
  5. Logging

Deforestation Solutions for Brazil

Today Brazil faces an enormous challenge: how to balance economic growth with the preservation of the Amazon rainforest.
  1. Rehabilitation and increased productivity of formerly forested lands
  2. Expansion of protection areas
  3. Development based on concepts of sustainable use of some existing forest
  4. Land policy reform
  5. Law Enforcement

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Copyright Rhett Butler 1994-2005