Nearby forest loss predicts future deforestation on protected lands

Protected forests are unlikely to be cut down when they are surrounded by intact forests. Conversely, the more degraded the boundaries of a protected area are, the more likely that deforestation will encroach into the protected forest as well.

These findings come from a new analysis of protected forests worldwide. The results have the potential to help national governments and other agencies direct limited resources toward those areas at greatest risk of deforestation, which threatens biodiversity and releases large amounts of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.

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