Sense, Predict, Act

Peruvian forests land change monitoring

Conserving Peruvian Forests

With around 72 million hectares of forest, Peru has among the largest coverage of tropical rainforests in the world. Peru’s forests are also some of the richest in the world in terms of biodiversity as well as natural and mineral resources. According to the FAO, Peru has on average lost 108,200 hectares (ha.) or 0.15% per year between 1990 and 2010.

Peru’s rate of deforestation has progressively decreased from 250,000 ha per year in 2000, to 150,000 ha in 2005 to present deforestation of around 90,000 ha per year. Dr. Brack Egg, Peru’s Minister of Environment estimates that over $100m in spending per year on high-res satellite images may be required to conserve Peru’s forests using current approaches. The Ministry of Environment (MINAM) is now partnering with the Planetary Skin Institute on a Global Public Good R&D program (ALERTS) that is expected to significantly reduce that cost. Speaking on the occasion of the beta launch of the ALERTS platform, he said:

“The Peruvian Government’s Ministry of Environment recognizes the critical importance and itself uses world-class space earth observation and geospatial platforms to understand a number of cross-cutting environmental issues and its relationship to land use change in Peru’s territory. That is why we are now integrating the geospatial analytic platform ALERTS, given that it will allow the Peruvian Government and its citizens to monitor land cover and vegetation changes across Peru at an appropriate spatial resolution and in near real time including detection of fires, other land changes and in estimating a baseline for carbon pools, amongst others; which will allow us to have greater insight to analyze with a greater precision the changes and resulting trends. As a result, we will have an integrated decision support platform that will allow us to develop sustainable development plans and will allow us to manage our natural resources in an integrated manner and the associated risks to mention but some of the benefits”
Dr Antonio Brack Egg, Minister of Environment, Government of Peru.

Peru Forest ALERTS

Heat map of land change events in Peru

ALERTS stands for the Automated Land change Evaluation, Reporting and Tracking System. It is an online cloud-based platform for near real-time global land change detection, and is available at no cost as a global public good to the public at

Targeted at national land use managers, conservation organizations, forest policymakers and scientific communities, ALERTS provides timely detection of land change events on a global basis as recently as 8 weeks after they occur, with a high degree of accuracy. Read more about ALERTS›