US: Google Earth has helped in developing an engaging, high-resolution map that shows global forest loss and gain. The map tracks changes in the world’s forests during the years 2000 to 2012. The map was created from satellite data and has the ability to zoom in to the high resolution of 30m. The team that designed the map was led by Professor Matthew Hansen of the University of Maryland.
“This is the first map of forest change that is globally consistent and locally relevant,” said Hansen adding, “What would have taken a single computer 15 years to perform was completed in a matter of days using Google Earth Engine computing.”
The map highlighted great forest losses in Indonesia, Malaysia, Paraguay and Angola, according to a study on the project in the journal Science. Brazil, on the other hand, saw successful reduction in deforestation. The study reveals that the huge South American country, home to most of the Amazon rain forest, reduced forest loss in half between 2003 to 2004 and 2010 to 2011.