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Basin-Wide Assessment of Forest Disturbances by Selective Logging and Forest Fires

Eraldo A.T. Matricardi, SEDAM-RO, matricar@msu.edu (Presenting)
Skole L. Skole, MSU, skole@msu.edu
Marcos A Pedlowski, UENF, pedlowma@uenf.br
Walter Chomentoski, MSU, chomento@msu.edu

This research involved a comprehensive study of multi-temporal and basin-wide changes of forest disturbances by selective logging and forest fires using remotely sensed data acquired in 1992, 1996, and 1999. Methods for detecting selective logging, burned forests, and estimating forest canopy cover were developed. The results of this study showed a substantial increase in total areas of selectively logged and burned forests, changing from approximately 11800 km2 to 35600 km2 by 1992 and 1999, respectively. Selective logging only was responsible for 60.4% of this forest disturbance in the studied period. Approximately 33% and 7% of forest disturbances detected in the same period were due to impacts of forest fire only and selective logging and forest fire combined, respectively. Most of the degraded forests (~90%) were detected in the States of Mato Grosso and Para. Theses estimates indicate that approximately 5467 km2, 7618 km2, and 17437 km2 were new areas of selective logging and/or forest fires in 1992, 1996, and 1999, respectively. Protected areas seemed to be very effective in constraining these types of forest degradation. Approximately 2.4% and 1.3% of the total detected selectively logged and burned forests, respectively, were geographically located within protected areas. However, it was observed an increasing trend for these anthropogenic activities to occur within the limits of protected areas from 1992 to 1999. Although forest fires impacted the least extent of natural forests, newly burned forests detected in 1996 and 1999 were responsible for the greatest impact on canopy cover, with an estimated loss of 18.8% of forest canopy when compared to undisturbed forests. Selective logging and forest fire combined impacted even more those canopies, with an estimated loss of 27.5% of forest canopy. Selectively logged forest only showed the least impact on canopy cover, with an estimated loss of 5% of forest canopy.

Science Theme:  LC (Land Use and Land Cover Change)

Session:  2C: Regional Land Use Change

Presentation Type:  Oral

Abstract ID: 7

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