Myanmar, abundant in natural resources, is one of the countries with high forest cover in Southeast Asia. Along with its rapid socio-economic development, however, the construction of large-scale infrastructure, expansion of agricultural land, and an increasing demand for timber products have posed serious threats to the forests and significantly affected regional sustainable development. However, the geographical environment in Myanmar is complex, resulting in the lack of long-term sequence of land cover data products. Based on 30 years’ Landsat satellite remote sensing imagery data and the land cover data extracted by a mixed classification method, this paper examined the spatial and temporal evolution characteristics of forest cover in Myanmar and investigated driving factors of the spatio-temporal evolution. Results show that the forest cover has decreased by 110,621 km2
in the past 30 years with the annual deforestation rate of 0.87%. Cropland expansion is the main reason for the deforestation throughout the study period. The study can provide basic information of the forest cover data to the Myanmar government for ecological environment protection. At the same time, it can provide important support to the “Belt and Road” initiative to invest in the region’s economy.
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