The 10 countries with the highest rate of deforestation in the world
Considering all these, for comparison purposes, although Brazil receives a great deal of attention for the deforestation of the Amazon – and with reason, considering the total area of deforested land – in proportion to the total area of the country the country does not is not among the twenty with greater deforestation. Over the past twenty years the rate of deforestation has been 8% and over 70% of historical forest cover remains.
All percentages refer to the years 1990-2005.
1) Honduras: -37% Historically, Honduras was mostly covered by trees, with half a percent of the land not forested. Today, about half of what remains (52%), with only about 16% untouched. Between 1990-2005, Honduras saw a 37% decline in its forest cover.
2) Nigeria: -36% Half of the land in Nigeria used to be covered with trees. But Nigeria has eliminated 36 percent of its trees in the past two decades.
3) Philippines: -32% The islands that make up the Philippines used to be all forest.Today, only 35% of these forests continue, the news (a bit good) is that about 28% remain as untouched forests. But with a deforestation rate of more than 26%, the future is not so bright.
4) Benin: -31% Benin did not start with large amounts of forest cover – only about 16% of the land used was wooded – and a high deforestation rate of 31% does not help preserve what remains. Less than 4% of the original forests remain, and none in untouched state.
5) Ghana: -28% About two thirds of Ghana was covered in forest, now, less than 10% forest cover remains and none untouched. At a declining rate since 1990 of 28%, the remaining forest has no chance at all without better forestry practices.
6) Indonesia: -26% Indonesia is a strange case. As much of Southeast Asia has been entirely covered with forest, about 65% of the forest cover remains, with about 29% in a virgin forest condition. But saw a serious decline in that forest cover in the past two decades that show no signs of giving up.
It is also an incredibly large country, and there are conditions places that are minimized in statistics. For example, in Borneo (third largest island in the world) between 1985-2000 more logs were felled than across South America and Africa combined. Half of the lowland forest is currently missing, which can increase to two-thirds in just ten years.
7) Nepal and North Korea: -25% Nepal has about 22% of its original remaining forest cover, not what is considered untouched – and the last two decades saw a 25% decline in forest cover.
In the past, almost all of North Korea was forested, but today about 61% was destroyed at a rate of 25%.
9) Ecuador and Haiti: -22% Completing the top fund, so to speak, are Ecuador, Liberia and Haiti, all of which have witnessed declines of 22% in forest cover since 1990.
Ecuador was originally largely forested, but today it has about two-thirds of remaining forest cover. The relatively good news is that about 37% is virgin forest.
The bad news about Haiti is that it has had a 22% drop in forest cover over the past 20 years. The worse news is that Haiti has cleared everything yet a fraction of a percent of its original forest, 99.2% to be exact. Here is the quintessential symbol of what happens when you have poor environmental practices.
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