According to data from the University of Maryland, primary tropical rainforest loss accounted for 3.75 Mha, an area comparable to the size of the Netherlands (Figure 1). The loss is less than in 2020 due to the decrease in forest fires. However, the cutting down of tropical rainforest remained at the same level. This has resulted in CO2 emissions of 2.5 Gt, which is more than half of Europe’s total emissions (4 Gt in 2019, europarl.europa.eu).
Figure 1. Loss of primary tropical rainforest 2002-2021 (source: globalforestwatch.com).
The countries with the greatest loss of primary rainforest were Brazil (1.6 Mha), Democratic Republic of Congo (0.5 Mha), Bolivia (0.3 Mha), Indonesia (0.2 Mha) and Peru (0.15 Mha) . This is unchanged from 2020. https://research.wri.org/gfr/forest-pulse