Green Going Gone: The Tragic Deforestation of the Chaco

31 July 2014

Monolithic agricultural companies are claiming they can practice sustainable farming in the heart of one of the world's most important wildernesses. The ravaged state of the Paraguayan Chaco forest is telling a different story.

A converted garage in Asuncion, Paraguay, seems an unlikely headquarters for the crusade to save one of Earth's last great wilderness expanses. But in a cluttered and fluorescent-lit room, three geographic information systems (GIS) analysts are hunched over their computer screens searching satellite maps for signs of fresh deforestation in South America's Gran Chaco forest, doing the best they can. "The Chaco is one of the most unknown remaining wildernesses on our planet," says Alberto Yanosky, the activist in charge of those analysts. The problem though, is that "we're losing the Chaco faster than scientists can study it."

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