“ How high does the sycamore tree grow
If you cut it down
You’ll never know “
(From the song “Just Around The Riverbend” from Disney Pocahontas)
Malaysia’s deforestation rate is accelerating faster than any other tropical country in the world, according to data from the United Nations (UN). Analysis of figures from the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO) shows that Malaysia’s annual deforestation rate jumped almost 86% between the 1990-2000 period and 2000-2005. In total, Malaysia lost an average of 140,200 hectares—0.65% of its forest area—per year since 2000.
Declining forest cover in Malaysia results primarily from urbanization, agricultural fires, and forest conversion for oil-palm plantations and other forms of agriculture. Logging, which is generally excluded in deforestation figures from FAO, is responsible for widespread forest degradation in the country, and green groups have blamed local timber companies for failing to practice sustainable forest management.
During the 1980s, rampant logging in Sabah and Sarawak allowed Malaysia to temporarily outpace Indonesia and become theworld’s largest exporter of tropical wood.
Peninsular Malaysia’s primary forests are mostly gone, though some magnificent forest still exists in Taman Negara, believed to be 130 million years old- the oldest in the world. The other remaining primary forests are in Sabah and Sarawak (where half the forest cover are slated for logging).
(Data source & Statistics from mongabay.com)