New Science Indicates Selective Logging of Amazon Highly Destructive

New Science Indicates Selective Logging of Amazon Highly Destructive calls upon mainstream environmental organizations and funders to heed this warning and embrace the goal of ending old-growth logging in all ancient forests
October 20, 2005
By < >, a project of EcoInternet
Contact: Dr. Glen Barry, +1 920 776 1075
Tomorrow the leading scientific journal “Science” will publish a report that indicates that selective logging is destroying the Amazon rainforest twice as fast as previously thought. A new satellite survey of the Amazon Basin in Brazil using new methods reveals that selective logging destroys an area of pristine rainforest big enough to cover the state of Connecticut every year.
It has long been known that first time selective logging of ancient forests – be it illegal or “certified” – is not sustainable in any meaningful ecological sense; as sunlight dries out the forest floor, which along with roads causes more forest fires, while heavy equipment damages the soil. Selectively logged ancient forests are diminished forever; containing different species in different abundances, changed size classes, differing forest structure, loss of genetic diversity and reductions in important soil microbes.
The new report indicates climate change is one of the biggest concerns when primary forests are selectively logged, as forest debris left behind decomposes and releases an estimated 100 million tons of carbon into the atmosphere every year in just the Amazon. This carbon release just by selective primary forest logging is enough to alter climate change forecasts on a global scale.

“The science on primary forests and selective logging is now clear, and calls upon those pushing ancient forest 'sustainable logging' to get off the gravy train, heed the science, and start working to fully protect ancient forests which are the foundation of the global ecosystem,” states's President Dr. Glen Barry. has been instrumental over past decades in highlighting the incompatibility of industrial logging – legal or illegal, selective or certified – and maintenance of large natural ancient forest landscapes required for global ecological sustainability. The idea that selective logging of ancient forests can be done in an environmentally sensitive fashion is a dangerous myth threatening large ancient forest expanses wherever they occur, but particularly in Canada, Brazil and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Unfortunately most major environmental groups including Greenpeace and WWF still cling to the notion that environmental benefits can come from first time industrial harvest of old-growth forests. And increasingly major environmental financiers such as the Pew Trusts and the Tides Foundation are funding organizations supporting ancient forest logging rather than efforts to end such practices, promote appropriately scaled community eco-forestry, and the establishment of large community supported protected areas. One can only wonder why.
Dr. Barry explains that “large ancient forests with intact ecological core areas free from industrial logging and other developments are a requirement for global ecological sustainability. Sadly, support for ancient forest logging by such luminaries as Greenpeace and Pew is a primary threat to the continued existence of the World's large primeval forest landscapes.”
“As climate change, habitat loss, water scarcity and ocean decline spiral out of control, the mainstream environmental establishment is guilty of a dangerous lack of imagination, vision and policies sufficient to address the crises. In regards to rapidly diminishing forest and climatic systems, this new research indicates conclusively that more selective logging of ancient forests is certainly not an answer.”
Media should contact Dr. Glen Barry at +1 920 776 1075 or for interviews and further information.
For more information on's “End Ancient Forest Logging” campaign, please see < >. To protest plans for increased selective logging in British Columbia, Canada's ancient temperate rainforests see: < >.

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5 Responses

  1. HB says:

    Of course selective logging is damaging, its a furfy(lie). Here in Tasmania Australia, Forestry Tasmania has an even better furfy they say Tasmania has “working forests”.
    One drives trough this wonderfull tall tree forest and comes to a sign saying “this is the … State Forest, this is a working forest”.
    ie we are constantly or Gunns Pty Ltd is constantly logging this forest. Selectively of course!
    The money mans propagandists are good! If nothing else one has got to give them that!
    ” If man new how the law of karma worked and how exacting, this world would be a different place”
    Keep up the good work,

  2. P. says:

    Youre right, GP and others are on the gravy train, they are so different from the grassroots activists who battle on v low incomes and are driven by science and a passion for their subject.
    GP has a lot in common with corporates, both in structure and management style.
    Like you, we had to keep reminding the 'green' apologists for selective logging that it is in no sense ecologically sustainable.

  3. Javier says:

    what the Sciencie article is saying isnt new at all. It is what many groups
    of the foei forest group have been locally denouncing: “corporative
    logging”, “selective logging”, intensive logging”, “destructive logging” all
    of them are sinonyms and responsable for degrading and thining the forest
    all around the world from Indonesia to Brazil, from Costa Rica to Papua New
    Guine. It is important to notice that there is both ilegal an legal
    destructive logging and for our forest program there is bassically no
    diference in term of social and forest degradation impact betwen them. In
    Costa Rica for example the law allow companies to complete destroy 14% of an
    area just for the tractor to enter and do the work, another 15 % total
    destruction is legally allow because of tree felling. Total forest
    destruction at the end of an operation 29%. As a forest program we wish to
    continue documenting more healthy forms of producing wood out of the forest
    and other forms of community based forest uses.
    We will not participate in the climate convention in Montreal , for us Kyoto
    lost most of the efectiveness in forest issues and we prefer to build on
    local resistant movements working within the Mombai declaration network and
    the Durban Movement group. We thing the CC campaig is already incorporate
    our possition:
    – no sink proyects, nor other forms of monoculture expansion
    – stop corporative logging
    – favor community forest control and use
    Javier Baltodano
    Foei- Forest Program

  4. Peter says:

    Yes the blog comment from Costa Rica is a good one – so much forest is taken for roads, turnarounds, landing sites etc. Here in NZ our campaigning eventualy forced the loggers to use a big helicopter but it needed a network of log landing sites no more than 4 km apart in order to be economical. Thats one helluva lot of roading. And to build a road you have total forest destruction. Then the weeds get in and the windthrow and the pests…Its not ecologically sustainable, its an ecological disaster.

  5. Andrewa says:

    You are so right the Amazon rocks

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