Each year Peru loses an average of 150,000 hectares of natural forest due to deforestation caused by migratory agriculture and subsistence activity that devastates the Amazon. According to the National Forestry and Wildlife Service (Serfor), other causes of deforestation that put the country's 74 million hectares of forest at risk are illegal logging, illegal mining and coca leaf cultivation.
John Leigh, Executive Director of Serfor, has pointed out that deforestation is concentrated in areas coinciding with the poverty map of the Amazon. Because of this, he said, it is the State's duty to ensure sustainable use of the resource for the benefit of the local population. "We have to give the forest a strong economic value and promote the wealth that it can produce in its natural sustainably managed state to avoid a change of land use or illegal activities” said Leigh.