Global Forest Watch Report

Global Forest Watch Report

This article covers “Daily Current Affairs” and the topic details “Global Forest Watch Report”. The topic “Global Forest Watch Report” has relevance in the “Ecology and Environment” section of the UPSC CSE exam.

For Prelims:

What is the Global Forest Watch? Who publishes it? What is primary forest? 


For Mains:

GS3: Ecological Conservation 


Why in the news?

In its new research, Global Forest Watch has stated that in 2022 tropical areas will lose 4.1 million hectares of forest cover – equivalent to losing an area of 11 football fields per minute. 


Global Forest Watch 

Global Forest Watch (GFW) is an open-source web application that monitors global forests in near real-time. 

  • It provides data and tools to track deforestation, forest degradation, and forest cover change. 
  • GFW is used by governments, businesses, and civil society organisations to inform decision-making and take action to protect forests.
  • GFW is a project of the World Resources Institute (WRI), in partnership with Google, USAID, the University of Maryland, and many other academic, non-profit, public, and private organisations.


2022 Report Findings: 

  • The 2022 Global Forest Watch report found that tropical primary forest loss worsened in 2022, despite international commitments to end deforestation. 
  • The report found that tropical primary forest loss totaled 4.1 million hectares in 2022, an increase of 10% from 2021. This loss is equivalent to an area the size of 11 football fields disappearing every minute.
  • Brazil and the Democratic Republic of the Congo had the highest rates of primary forest loss in 2022, while Indonesia and Malaysia continued to reduce their loss.
  • Ghana and Bolivia experienced record-high levels of primary forest loss in 2022, driven by agriculture, mining and fires.
  • Global tree cover loss declined by 10% in 2022, mainly due to a decrease in fire-related losses, especially in Russia.
  • Global Forest Watch reports that India experienced a loss of 43.9 thousand hectares of humid primary forest between 2021 and 2022, representing approximately 17% of the country’s total reduction in tree cover during that period. The overall tree cover loss in India between 2021 and 2022 amounted to 255 thousand hectares.


Primary Forest: 

Primary forests are mature, natural forests that have not been significantly altered by human activity. They are important carbon sinks and biodiversity hotspots. 

  • Primary forest loss is often irreversible, as secondary forests that grow in their place do not have the same biodiversity or carbon storage capacity.



WRI evaluates progress towards two objectives which encompass various international forest commitments. 

  • Ending deforestation by 2030 
  • Restoring 350 million hectares (Mha) of depleted and degraded forests by 2030 

According to the report, the majority of global forest-related commitments are not being met. 

  • In order to attain the 2030 target, it is necessary to annually reduce global deforestation by at least 10%. Although the global deforestation rate in 2022 was 3.1% lower compared to the baseline period of 2018-2020, it still exceeded the required level by over one million hectares. Consequently, the world is deviating from the path to achieve the 2030 goal.
  • To accomplish the objective of restoring 350 Mha of forests globally by 2030, it is imperative to increase tree cover by 22 Mha per year between 2021 and 2030. Despite some progress, the overall change in tree cover over the past two decades has resulted in a net loss of 100 Mha. 
  • This indicates that forests are still being lost, and restoration efforts are not occurring at the necessary pace.


Other Reports by World Resources Institute: 

  • World Resources Report
  • State of Climate Action Report 
  • Global Forest Review


World’s tropical forest cover continued to decrease in 2022, new research says – The Hindu 

plutus ias current affairs eng med 11th July-2023


Q1. Global Forest Watch has recently published its report, consider the following statements in this context: 

  1. Primary forests have a higher biodiversity and carbon storage capacity than secondary forests that grow at the same place. 
  2. Brazil had one of the highest rates of primary forest loss in 2022.
  3. India experienced an increase of humid primary forest between 2021 and 2022.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

(a) 1 and 2 only

(b) 2 and 3 only

(c) 3 only 

(d) None 

Answer: (a) 



Q2. Consider the following pairs:

Report/ Index Organisation

  1. Global Forest Review World Resources Institute (WRI)
  2. State of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO)
    World’s Forests
  3. State of Global World Meteorological Organization (WMO)
    Water Resources
  4. Global Forest Watch Germanwatch

How many of the above mentioned pairs are correctly matched ?

(a) Only one 

(b) Only two 

(c) Only three 

(d) All Four 

Answer: (c)


Q3. Forests are critical ecosystems for fighting climate change, supporting livelihoods and protecting biodiversity. In light of the statement, highlight the diverse efforts undertaken by both governmental and non-governmental entities to protect and preserve forests.

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