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Integration of remote sensing techniques and information on ecosystem services to measure tropical forest degradation - A case study from the tropical rain forest of Ecuador

Forest degradation is a serious problem, particularly in developing countries. It affects the social, cultural, and ecological functions of forests, and it is a silent killer of sustainable development. Also, forest degrada-tion is one of the major sources of greenhouse gas emissions although its significance has not been estimated on a global scale. In Ecuador degradation is one of the greatest direct threats to biodiversity and forests in the country affecting the ecosystem services provision. The country has approximately 10 million hectares of forest and 6 million hectares are located in the Amazon Basin region. Numerous ecosystem services derived from the region such as pollination and flood control may also appear in larger spatial scales, extending over complex landscapes and whole watershed. This study will analyse forest degradation in tropical rain forest of Ecuador. This zone has one of the greatest concentrations of biodiversity within the world‘s tropical forests. The objective of this study is to integrate remote sensing techniques and information on ecosystem services to measure tropical forest degradation in therain tropical forest. The specific objectives are (a) to measure the structural aspects of forest degradation by RS methods and (b) to relate structural forest degradation to the provision of ecosystem services by interviews. The results will be used to produce several scientific publications (e.g. SAR’s potential to assess and assessment of ecosystem services provision in the study area). Also results will be an input to some local strategies in favour of conservation carried out in Ecuador.

Ansprechpartner: Jeaneth Delgado
Email: jeaneth.delgado@landespflege.uni-freiburg.de
Projektbeginn: 2012
Projektende: 2016
Dr. Christine Schmitt, Jeaneth Delgado

Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg

Rain Forest Alliance

  • Landesgraduiertenförderung BW

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