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Another tool that has long been used for visualizing forest data is Global Forest Watch. Founded in 1997, the goal of the platform, said Harris, is to demystify the data and put it into a format that decisionmakers can use. Last week, the platform announced the new GLAD (Global Land Analysis and Discovery) alert system, which detects tree cover loss in Peru, the Republic of Congo and Indonesian Borneo in less than one week.
"Global Forest Watch has made the data available to anyone with a laptop and Internet connection," said Frances Seymour, a senior fellow at the Washington, D.C.-based think tank Center for Global Development.