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Tracking down products linked to deforestation

The role of remote sensing technologies in implementing the EU legislation on deforestation-free products


A report by Kayrros 

Under the planned EU legislation on deforestation-free products, operators will have to demonstrate that certain commodities and products they wish to import to the EU, or export from the EU, are not associated with deforestation or forest degradation. 

To be able to do so, companies will have to link these commodities and products to the exact plots of land where they were produced, as well as the date of production. Competent authorities must be able to verify this information. 

In this report, Kayrros, a geospatial analytics company from France, argues that satellite-based remote sensing technologies can support both operators and competent authorities in the implementation of the upcoming EU legislation on deforestation-free products. The capabilities and limitations of these technologies for detecting land use changes, identifying production plots and mapping supply chains vary from one commodity to another. 

The operating costs of remote sensing technologies are expected to be manageable. They fall primarily on the exporters and importers of forest-risk commodities, not on the growers or domestic traders. As growers would only have to provide the geolocation data of their production areas, fears of impacting small producers are not justified.


Sarpa salpa fish / CC0 marino-linic
Sarpa salpa fish / CC0 marino-linic
Parkywiki (CC BY-SA 4.0 DEED)
Empty Glyphosate (Herbolex) container discarded in Corfu olive grove
Autumn in Vitosha mountain, Bulgaria / CC0 veliko-karachiviev
Autumn in Vitosha mountain, Bulgaria Forest monitoring / CC0 veliko-karachiviev

Responsible MEPs

Marie Toussaint
Marie Toussaint

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