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DEFORESTATION

Deforestation is the clearance of naturally occurring forests by the processes of logging and/or burning of trees in a forested area. There are several reasons deforestation occurs: trees or derived charcoal can be sold as a commodity and used by humans, while cleared land is used as pasture, plantations of commodities and human settlement. The removal of trees without sufficient reforestation has resulted in damage to habitat, biodiversity loss and aridity. It has adverse impacts on biosequestration of atmospheric carbon dioxide. Deforested regions typically incur significant adverse soil erosion and frequently degrade into wasteland. Disregard or ignorance of intrinsic value, lack of ascribed value, lax forest management and deficient environmental law are some of the factors that allow deforestation to occur on a large scale. In many countries, deforestation is an ongoing issue that is causing extinction, changes to climatic conditions, desertification, and displacement of indigenous people.

DEFORESTATION

The permanent removal of forest cover and conversion of the land to other uses. According to the land use definition used by FAO and accepted by most governments, forest land that has been harvested, even clear-cut, is not regarded as deforested because, in principle, trees may re-grow or be replanted. Deforestation is recorded only when the land is permanently converted to non-forest use. However, the remote sensing imagery used in this report to determine land cover (the presence or absence of forest) over time does not make such a distinction and clear-cut land has been recorded as non-forest or deforested land.

DEFORESTATION

May be generally defined as a reduction in tree density and/or increased disturbance to the forest that results in the loss of forest products and forest-derived ecological services. The FAO defines degradation as changes within the forest class (for example, from closed to open forest) that negatively affect the stand or site and, in particular, lower production capacity. Common causes of forest degradation include selective felling, fuelwood collection, road building, and shifting cultivation. Human activities have had tremendous impact on modern forests. Since agriculture began about 11,000 years ago, large forest areas have been cleared for farms and cities. Beginning in the 1800's, great expanses of forest have also been eliminated because of logging and industrial pollution.

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DEFORESTATION

 

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