Everyone agrees that logging and agriculture can cause deforestation. But does shifting cultivation, or ‘slash and burn’ farming destroy forests particularly? Are local farmers solely to blame? Recent research by Overseas Development Institute (ODI) suggests the role of shifting farming in starting forest fires has been exaggerated. It is not, in fact, a major cause of biodiversity loss. The report finds that the causes of deforestation are many and varied, and that governments and international investors are also responsible.
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