Global Forest Watch Blog

Stay atop the latest forest research and news! The Global Forest Watch blog uses data to illuminate the state of forests worldwide and tells the stories of people dedicated to protecting them. Read about rainforests, deforestation, fires, sustainable agriculture, forest management and other topics critical to the future of forests.

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Fires, Floods and Farming as Seen by Satellites

Satellites, constantly orbiting around our planet, see just about everything. Which means that when a tree falls in a forest, satellites know about it. Global Forest Watch’s (GFW) tree cover loss data, derived from NASA satellite imagery, can pinpoint where trees have fallen around the world. To help us understand what might have caused this […]

Mapa Oaxaca Platform Puts the Power of Data into the Hands of Mexican Communities

Raul Padilla Calderon is an IT consultant working with the Oaxacan government on Biodiversity matters, and Floriberto Vásquez Ruiz works within the Oaxacan state government as the Undersecretary for Climate Change, Natural Resources and Biodiversity. In Oaxaca, Mexico, 78% of the land is controlled by local communities— that’s over 9,375,000 hectares. Yet, although these communities […]

Hutanwatch Spearheads Forest Data Transparency in Malaysia

It started off as a side project. Global Forest Watch (GFW) user, JD*, had a day job at the time — and still does — working with NGOs on forest and land use issues in Malaysia. JD was frustrated with the difficulty of finding reliable maps of forest cover for the country. Much of the […]

Latest articles

Improved Universal Mill List Expands Partnerships, Improves Transparency in Palm Oil Industry

Last year, when the Universal Mill List (UML) was launched on Global Forest Watch (GFW) and the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil’s (RSPO) PalmTrace, the palm oil industry took a step towards improved supply chain traceability and transparency. Today, the release of a newly updated version of the UML represents another leap forward, further aligning […]

A Carbon-Neutral Land Sector by 2040? Here's How to Get There

The 1.5 mark holds special resonance in the climate struggle. In the Paris Agreement, Parties agreed to try to limit warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius for the best chance at avoiding the worst impacts of climate change. This August, a special report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change unveiled another 1.5 mark: temperatures over land have already risen […]

Brazil’s Fire Ban Correlates a Reduction in Amazon Wildfires. The Ban Lifts Today.

Fires across Brazil caught the world’s attention this August, with fears that burning — and subsequent damage to the Amazon rainforest — would only intensify when peak fire season hit in September. However, Global Forest Watch (GFW) analysis of NASA data shows that fire alerts in the Amazon decreased by 34% between August and September. […]

Triumphs and Challenges of Using Deforestation Alerts in Peru

In 2016, Global Forest Watch (GFW) and the University of Maryland released the world’s most detailed satellite-based deforestation alerts. Since the launch, the GLAD alert system has expanded from just three countries to the entire tropical region and is accessed by hundreds of thousands of users through GFW.   Peru’s Early Warning Alerts After using the GLAD deforestation alerts, […]

Intense Forest Fires Season Threatens to Disrupt Indonesia's Progress in Reducing Deforestation

Indonesia’s forest fires have made headlines globally over the past few weeks. This year’s forest fires have affected millions of people. Schools have closed in some areas due to unsafe levels of air pollution, while many people are suffering from respiratory illnesses. The haze has spread so far as to affect Singapore and Malaysia. While […]

5 Maps Show How Moving Indonesia's Capital Could Impact the Environment

In late August, Indonesian President Joko Widodo announced that he will move the country’s capital to another island. The current capital of Jakarta is located on Java, the most populated island in the world. President Widodo’s motivation for moving is that the city is sinking by as much as 6 inches (15 cm) per year, […]