The ‘Family of 5’ Primary Forests: A Snapshot of What Remains

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The “Family of Five” global forests contain magnificent expanses of wilderness that look very much today as they did a millennia ago. They are:

  • The Congo Basin of Africa.
  • The forests of Papua New Guinea, Borneo, and Northern Australia.
  • South America’s Amazon Basin.
  • Siberia’s boreal forest.
  • North America’s boreal forest, of which the largest portion is in Canada.

These primary forests are unique because they still comprise massive areas that are not yet scarred or bisected and remain mostly free of large-scale industrial development or other infrastructure.

In fact, you could fly over the biggest of these forests—the boreal regions of Canada, Alaska, and Siberia and the Amazon Basin forests of South America—for hours with a view uninterrupted by roads, power lines, and buildings.

That in itself is remarkable.

read more: voices.nationalgeographic.com/2015/07/16/family-of-5-and-what-remains/
article: Jeff Wells
photo: Chad Delany

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