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Mining, forest change and conflict in the Kivus

This report presents the outcome of a study carried out within the Environmental Security for Poverty Alleviation (ESPA) programme of the Institute for Environmental Security. It was largely prepared by SarVision, to promote and advance the development and implementation of permanent monitoring of ecosystems with satellite technology.

Applying satellite imagery, the report presents forest cover change maps, indicating that deforestation fronts coincide with the location of mineral resources. Confirmation on the ground is urgently needed though, before conclusions can be drawn on (the causes of) forest cover change. Further, by using geographical information, it shows that there is a geographical relation between mining areas and location and magnitude of conflict events.

The report finds that with the advent of advanced radar, in particular ALOS PALSAR, it has now become possible to measure forest cover change annually at fine spatial resolutions. It is concluded that, for enforcing the law, for controlling of logging and mining, for monitoring tree plantations, and for the realisation of payment for ecosystem services contracts, the systematic use of such satellite imagery is indispensable.

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Author(s)Van de Giessen, E., R. Van Rompaeij, M. Vissers, N. Wielaard, P. Yamba Kantu
PublisherInstitute for Environmental Security
Place publishedThe Hague
Date / Journal Vol No.May 2008

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