Large-Scale Impoverishment of Amazonian Forests by Logging and Fire

Large-Scale Impoverishment of Amazonian Forests by Logging and Fire


Amazonia typically uses deforestation rates to predict the effects on the carbon cycle and to measure the loss of forest in Brazil. The authors claim that these connections are limited. 

Research Goals & Methods

To widen the scope, the authors aim to include other factors to be used in deforestation mapping. The two primary ones the article focuses on are wood mills and forest burning. 

Conclusions & Takeaways

The authors found that due to uncaptured forest burning, wood mills and other factors, annual deforestation estimates for the Brazilian Amazon account for less than half of impoversished forest area.




Nepstad DC, Verssimo A, Alencar A, et al. Large-scale impoverishment of Amazonian forests by logging and fire. Nature. 1999;398:505–508. doi:10.1038/19066.


  • Woods Hole Research Center, Woods Hole, Massachusetts, USA
  • Instituto de Pesquisa Ambiental da Amazônia Campus do Guamá, Belém, Pará, Brazil
  • Instituto do Homem e Meio Ambiente da Amazônia, IMAZON, Belém, Pará, Brazil
  • Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas Espaciais, Brazil
  • Ecosystem Science and Technology Branch, NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, California, USA
  • Universidade Federal do Acre, Parque Zoobotânico, Rio Branco, Acre, CEP, Brazil