Menu

Global Forest Estimate Rises 9 Percent

Dryland biomes are covered in at least 40 percent more forest than previously estimated.

May 15, 2017
Aggie Mika

WIKIMEDIA, ARTHUR MEDEIROS

          An international team of scientists uncovered 1,803,097 square miles (467 million hectares) of previously unreported forest populating Earth’s dryland biomes, boosting forest cover globally by at least 9 percent, according to a study published last week (May 11) in the journal Science. This update estimates that forest cover in drylands is 40-47 percent higher than what has previously been found. 

Jean-François Bastin, first author on the study and an ecologist with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, told Mongabay that he and his colleagues were “surprised and stunned” at their new estimates.

In their report, the researchers demonstrated that in 2015, out of the estimated 23.67 million square miles (6,132 million hectares) of total dryland covering the earth’s surface, 4.16 million square miles were covered in forest, while another 5.12 million square miles of dryland (1,327 million hectares) boasted more than 10 percent tree cover.

Previous studies attempting to describe forests in dryland biomes were “riddled with disparities, caused by issues such as differences in satellite spatial resolution, mapping approaches and forest definitions,” according to a press release.

In their approach, the researchers used Google Earth’s satellite data and images taken at a high frequency and resolution, which allowed for a more accurate estimate.

According to a Science report, this updated estimate will enable researchers to more accurately determine how much carbon dioxide absorption the Earth’s forests can account for. 

November 2018

Intelligent Science

Wrapping our heads around human smarts

Marketplace

Sponsored Product Updates

LGC announces new, integrated, global portfolio brand, Biosearch Technologies, representing genomic tools for mission critical customer applications

LGC announces new, integrated, global portfolio brand, Biosearch Technologies, representing genomic tools for mission critical customer applications

LGC’s Genomics division announced it is transforming its branding under LGC, Biosearch Technologies, a unified portfolio brand integrating optimised genomic analysis technologies and tools to accelerate scientific outcomes.

DefiniGEN licenses CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing technology from Broad Institute to develop cell models for optimized metabolic disease drug development

DefiniGEN licenses CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing technology from Broad Institute to develop cell models for optimized metabolic disease drug development

DefiniGEN Ltd are pleased to announce the commercial licensing of CRISPR-Cas9 gene-editing technology from Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard in the USA, to develop human cell disease models to support preclinical metabolic disease therapeutic programmes.

Thermo Fisher Scientific: Freezers for Biological Samples

Thermo Fisher Scientific: Freezers for Biological Samples

Fluctuations in temperature can reduce the efficacy, decompose, or shorten the shelf life of biologics. Therefore, it is important to store biologics at the right temperature using standardized protocols.