A paradise being lost: Peru's most important forests felled for timber, crops, roads, mining

13 August 2014

In 1988, when British environmentalist Norman Myers first described the concept of a “biodiversity hotspot” - an area with at least 0.5 percent or 1,500 endemic plants that has lost 70 percent of its primary vegetation - he could have been painting a picture of the highly threatened Peruvian Andes mountain range. Today, the Andes are an immediate and looming portent of the fate of the Peruvian Amazon rainforest.

This year, Peru scored a 45.05 on the Environmental Performance Index (EPI), coming in 110th in the world. The EPI is a metric that analyses the performance of a country with respect to high-priority environmental issues, mainly the protection of human health from environmental harm and the protection of ecosystems themselves.