Modeling illegal logging in Brazil

Bohan Chen, Kaiyan Peng, Christian Parkinson, Andrea L. Bertozzi, Tara Lyn Slough, Johannes Urpelainen

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    Deforestation is a major threat to global environmental wellness, with illegal logging as one of the major causes. Recently, there has been increased effort to model environmental crime, with the goal of assisting law enforcement agencies in deterring these activities. We present a continuous model for illegal logging applicable to arbitrary domains. We model the practice of criminals under influence of law enforcement agencies using tools from multiobjective optimal control theory and consider non-instantaneous logging events and load-dependent travel velocity. We calibrate our model using real deforestation data from the Brazilian rainforest and demonstrate the importance of geographically targeted patrol strategies.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Article number29
    JournalResearch in Mathematical Sciences
    Issue number2
    StatePublished - Jun 2021


    • Fast sweeping method
    • Hamilton–Jacobi–Bellman equation
    • Illegal logging
    • Optimal control
    • Optimal path planning

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Theoretical Computer Science
    • Mathematics (miscellaneous)
    • Computational Mathematics
    • Applied Mathematics


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