The State of the World’s Forests (SOFO) 2022 report was released by the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO).
Findings of the report:
The world has lost 420 million hectares (mha), approximately 10.34 percent of its total forest area in the last 30 years.
The 420 mha of forests have been lost between 1990 and 2020, due to deforestation, though forests cover 4.06 billion ha (31 percent) of the earth’s geographical area.
The rate of deforestation was declining, 10 mha of forests were lost every year between 2015 and 2020. Earlier, some 47 mha of primary forests were lost between 2000 and 2020.
Carbon emissions and other drawbacks of Deforestation:
Unless additional action is taken, an estimated 289 mha of forests would be deforested between 2016 and 2050 in the tropics alone, resulting in the emission of 169 GtCO2e.
15 percent of 250 emerging infectious diseases have been linked to forests. It further stated that 30 percent of new diseases, reported since 1960, can be attributed to deforestation and land-use change.
Deforestation, particularly in the tropics, has been associated with an increase in infectious diseases such as dengue fever and malaria.
The 2022 edition of The State of the World’s Forests (SOFO) explores the potential of three forest pathways for achieving green recovery and tackling multidimensional planetary crises, including climate change and biodiversity loss.
Three Pathways to Achieve Green Recovery:
- Halting deforestation and maintaining forests.
- Restoring degraded lands and expanding agroforestry.
- Sustainably using forests and building green value chains.