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High-Resolution Satellites Help Monitor and Respond to Fires in Southeast Asia

Today, in Jakarta, WRI, DigitalGlobe, the Indonesian government, Google, Esri, and a host of other partners launched Global Forest Watch Fires, an online platform for monitoring and responding to forest and land fires in Southeast Asia.

It features near real-time satellite images from DigitalGlobe, fire alerts from NASA, a text messaging alert system, mapping of burn scars from Google Earth Engine, wind direction and air quality data, land-use and concession maps, and much more.

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JAKARTA, INDONESIA— As the dry season begins in Indonesia, the risk of fires and haze is growing. On July 23, the World Resources Institute (WRI) and Indonesia’s National REDD+ Agency (BP REDD) will launch Global Forest Watch Fires (GFW-Fires), an online platform to monitor and respond to forest and land fires in Southeast Asia.

Q&A: Why Are Community Forests So Important?

Governments, civil society, and donors are working to strengthen community forest rights in many countries.

A new report by WRI and the Rights and Resources Initiative, to be released on July 24th, shows governments can meet their climate change mitigation targets by protecting community forest rights.

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Tar Sands Threaten World’s Largest Boreal Forest

According to data from Global Forest Watch, an online mapping platform that tracks tree cover loss and gain in near-real time, industrial development and forest fires in Canada’s tar sands region has cleared or degraded 775,500 hectares (almost two million acres) of boreal forest since the year 2000. That’s an area more than six times the size of New York City. If the tar sands extraction boom continues, as many predict, we can expect forest loss to increase.

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New Study Shows Indonesia Losing Primary Forest at Unprecedented Rates

New analysis published in Nature Climate Change shows that Indonesia is losing primary forest at a staggering rate. The country now has the highest rate of loss in tropical primary forests in the world, overtaking Brazil. Primary tropical forests are the most carbon- and biodiversity-rich type of forest ecosystem.

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3 Myths and Facts about Forest and Landscape Restoration

Reflecting on World Forest Week 2014, where the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the UN launched a Forest and Landscape Restoration Mechanism to help countries meet the Bonn Challenge to restore 150 million hectares of degraded and deforested lands by 2020, we need to further think about creating the rich landscapes that the world needs.

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New Palm Oil Production Maps Mark a Milestone in Transparency

A new initiative from WRI and the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) aims to shed light on how oil palm concessions affect forests.

Global Forest Watch Commodities (GFW-Commodities) combines the RSPO’s maps of certified sustainable palm oil production sites with global forest data—information that can empower companies to manage their forests and supply chains more sustainably.

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7 Unexpected Places for Forest Landscape Restoration

There is a tremendous amount of underutilized and unproductive land throughout the world that has the potential to provide valuable ecosystem services if trees are returned to the landscape.

In collaboration with the University of Maryland and IUCN, and as part of the Global Partnership on Forest Landscape Restoration, WRI recently updated its Atlas of Forest Landscape Restoration Opportunities. We found that more than 2 billion hectares of land worldwide have the potential to be restored—and many of them are located in some unexpected places.

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Restoration: It’s About More than Just the Trees

Almost half of the world’s original forests have been cleared or degraded. So naturally, most people think of the “forest restoration” movement as an effort to re-plant these lost trees.

But it’s time to see restoration as more than just the trees.

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