Tropical ecosystems are exceptionally rich in biodiversity, containing most terrestrial biodiversity. However, rapid and extensive forest degradation, which causes modifications of ecosystems and fragmentation of habitats, is leading to an alarming loss of biodiversity (Laurence 1999). Most of the 25 biodiversity hotspots, as defined by Myers et al. (2000), are in the tropics and characterized by high levels of endemism and habitat loss. Two of these are partly in Indonesia: the Sundaland (western Indonesia) and the Wallacea (eastern Indonesia). Environmental degradation in Indonesia has been severe during recent decades (Sodhi et al. 2004). From 1990 to 2005, Indonesia lost 21.32 million ha of forest (17.56% of its forest cover); however, the mean rate of deforestation in Indonesia for the period 19902000 (1.78 million ha/year) was three times that for 20002005 (0.58 million ha/year) (Hansen et al. 2009). Yet despite this decrease in deforestation, forest loss in Indonesia remains high, with more than 500,000 ha lost each year during 20052010 (FAO 2010). The main direct causes of these high rates of deforestation are: conversion of forest to agricultural lands, commercial logging, fire and mining (Sodhi et al. 2004).
Series: CIFOR Working Paper no. 137
Publisher: Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR), Bogor, Indonesia
Publication Year: 2014