The Malaysian Forestry Department is trialling radio frequency identification (RFID) to detect illegal logging activities. The technology uses radio waves to transfer data from an electronic chip attached to an object, allowing it to be tracked and identified.
The trees are individually fitted with RFID tags, making it possible to record and trace each legally felled tree. The decision to trial this technology was spurred by pressure from the European Union to guarantee exported wood products were harvested in a sustainable way.
Dr Abdul Rahman, director general at the Forestry Department, hopes the system will prevent illegal loggers destroying forest reserves, and allow Malaysia to meet the EU’s export standards. This initiative is a great example of the diverse ways RFID tags can be used in industry.