Saving logged tropical forests: closing roads will bring immediate benefits
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There is growing recognition that selectively logged tropical forests retain high conservation value (Gibson et al. 2011). In their editorial, Laurance and Edwards (Front Ecol Environ 2014; 12: 147) drew attention to the vulnerability of forests after logging and proposed several highly pertinent strategies to minimize subsequent biodiversity loss. One of these - the closure of logging roads - warrants closer scrutiny. To date this has been under-acknowledged in the context of selectively logged forests, but this single action could pay immediate dividends to tropical biodiversity. By way of illustration, we show that from 2000 to 2012 in Kalimantan, Indonesian Borneo, forest loss was nearly twice as high in areas where logging roads (built before the year 2000) were present than in areas where such roads were absent.
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