High-resolution maps show that rubber causes substantial deforestation
Researchers used Earth observation satellite data and cloud computing to create detailed maps of rubber farming and associated deforestation in Southeast Asia. Their findings indicate that the deforestation caused by rubber cultivation has been significantly underestimated in policy discussions and recent reports. The study reveals that rubber-related forest loss is two to three times higher than previously thought, with over 4 million hectares of forest lost for rubber since 1993. This extensive deforestation can have significant effects on biodiversity and ecosystem services in the region, emphasizing the need for increased attention and policy measures regarding rubber farming.
Wang, Y., Hollingsworth, P.M., Zhai, D. et al. High-resolution maps show that rubber causes substantial deforestation. Nature (2023). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41586-023-06642-z