|Indonesia is the second largest producer of palm oil in the world, after Malaysia. The drive to meet the demand for palm oil is resulting in conversion of forested areas into palm oil plantations. These three satellite images reveal how a combination of transmigration, logging interests, and palm oil plantation development have transformed an area that was previously tropical lowland rain and swamp forest.|
While the 1990 image shows the first signs of development in this region, with the jagged access road network forming the only break in the forest cover, the October 2000 image reveals an area being prepared for palm oil plantations, and evidence of an influx of plantation workers. The 2002 image clearly shows a checkered pattern of plantations in the primary development area, and the extension of the road network to the north, south, and southwest.
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