COP26 Forest Protection Side Deal: Links

Primary Rainforest Destruction Increased 12% from 2019 to 2020. Brazil Leads the World in Primary Forest Loss. Also Bolivia, Colombia and Peru see high levels of forest loss. Nonetheless Indonesia and Malaysia show how good politics can curb deforestation. Indonesia’s rate of primary forest loss decreased for the fourth year in a row in 2020. After devastating forest and peat fires in 2015, Indonesia’s government issued a temporary moratorium on new oil palm plantation licenses and a permanent moratorium on primary forest and peatlands conversion. Agrarian and social forestry reforms have eased pressures on forests by alleviating poverty and encouraging sustainable land use. In addition to government initiatives corporate commitments in the pulp and paper and oil palm sectors may also be reducing deforestation. The efforts must be continued in order not to increase forest loss again. Cambodia, Laos and Myanmar on the other hand continue to see sustained or increasing levels of primary forest loss. During the Covid-19 pandemic there have been reports of increased illegal harvesting in protected areas, many of which were temporarily closed to the public and had restrictions on ranger activities. More important will be however how countries choose to rebuild their economies.