Peru to replant 25 million acres of forest
Rhett A. Butler, mongabay.com
January 2, 2008
Following a scolding from the World Bank, Peru launches ambitious reforestation project.
Peru plans to reforest more than 10 million hectares (25 million acres) of logged and degraded forest over the next 10 years according to the country’s National Institute of Natural Resources (INRENA). The government hopes the moves will reduce pressure on native forests and bolster the plantation forest industry.
The announcement comes after a World Bank report revealed that environmental degradation has cost Peru nearly $2.6 billion, according to the International Tropical Timber Organization’s bimonthly update. The report recommended that Peru take steps to reduce deforestation and air pollution as well as unplanned colonization in the Amazon basin.
Deforestation in Peru
A study published in the journal Science last year showed that deforestation rates during the 2004-2005 year were about 175 percent of the mean for the 1999-2005 period. Higher commodity prices and new logging concessions appeared to have fueled the increase.
Nevertheless Peru has some 661,000 square kilometers of tropical forests—an area a little larger than France—and one of the lowest annual deforestation rates in the Amazon basin. About 13.7 percent of the country is under some form of protection.