Guyana deforestation rate hits 7-year low, officials say

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According to data released on Oct. 5 by the Guyana Forestry Commission (GFC), the small South American nation’a deforestation rate in 2017 was 0.048 percent. Government official say that their new deforestation estimates are the lowest since assessments started back in 1990. Environmental advocates say the reduction in timber concession areas has reduced road building by loggers that once facilitated opportunistic mining. GEORGETOWN, Guyana — Guyana recorded its lowest rate of deforestation last year since 2010, when the South American country established a national Monitoring Reporting and Verification (MRV) program. According to Guyana Forestry Commission (GFC) data, released on Oct. 5, the deforestation rate in 2017 was 0.048 percent — down from the 0.050 percent recorded in 2015-2016. Prior to 2010, Guyana’s relatively low rate of deforestation was recorded in blocks of years rather than annually, so comparing rates over the past few decades is problematic. Still, the 2017 rate could be lowest going back several decades, said Pradeepa Bholanath, head of the GFC’s planning and development division. “It is very likely in our estimation that it [0.048 percent] is the lowest [deforestation rate] since we started assessments back in 1990,” Bholanath told Mongabay. Guidelines published by the Norwegian […]

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