Global Forest Watch.

Pixel perfection for forest detection.

Uniting sophisticated monitoring and analysis with cutting-edge visualisation software, Global Forest Watch revolutionises our ability to track what’s happening in our forests right now.

For five years now, Vizzuality has engaged with the World Resources Institute and the rest of our partners in GFW to create a new way of visualising forest data. Using the excellent datasets provided by the partnership, we have designed, developed and refined Global Forest Watch into a sophisticated, responsive web-mapping application that puts near real-time data at your fingertips. You can find out if protected areas are conserving forests, explore key trends in your country, or see where trees were lost in the last week.

The sheer amount and variety of data provides a huge design and engineering challenge. Never before has anyone put together such a vast amount of data about different aspects of forests in an accessible, understandable, easy to use tool. Our mixture of modern design principles, deep understanding of user needs and coding at the edge of APIs helped deliver an award-winning user experience.

In 2016, Global Forest Watch was used to expose illegal deforestation by United Cocoa of primary tropical forest in Peru. Mongabay used images of the Global Forest Watch map to report the deforestation, setting in motion a series of events that led to the company ceasing its operations.

Open, reusable foundations.

The whole site is built using a unique combination of customised open source software, bringing together the most advanced technologies and data providers to deliver an interactive and understandable experience. We created the platform’s design guidelines, ensuring a clean, professional and understandable experience across all of the various parts of the site. With our open source codebase and the strong public API, you can use and re-use any part of the platform in your own application.

Data in almost real-time.

With the Global Land Analysis and Discovery alerts, we can release fresh new data every week about how forests have changed. What used to be a yearly routine can now be undertaken weekly. And that data is extremely precise: we can detect change at a scale of just 30x30m (half the size of a football pitch). By encoding multiple years of data into single map tiles, changes over time can be animated much more quickly, without the need to download the data for each transition; this significantly boosts performance.

More than deforestation data.

Biodiversity data layers include Global Biodiversity Intactness and Biodiversity Hotspots.

Land use data layers map logging, mining and oil palm concessions.

Recent satellite imagery reveal how landscapes are changing month by month.

What's new on Global Forest Watch?

Read our blog.

Next project.

Global Forest Watch.

World Resources Institute.