September 25, 2015
Geography teachers love the Nile Delta because it so well epitomizes what a river delta is — clear demonstration of the delta form, in real photos.
From the International Space Station, the model gets ramped up a bit:
Twitter caption: A stunning pic taken by @StationCDRKelly while on @Space_Station shows the Nile River at night http://go.nasa.gov/1iAE3EV
The Nile becomes a river of light, showing the advance of electrified human settlement along the banks, and providing stark contrast to the unlighted desert on either side of the river.
What other cities, landmarks, or geographical features can you identify in the photo?
August 11, 2015
National Geographic Society reminded us they’ve had to change maps of the arctic.
National Geographic Society composed this GIF to compare their maps over past 16 years: A GIF of National Geographic atlases from 1999 through 2014 shows how Arctic ice has melted over time.
President Barack Obama noted the change in his announcement of U.S. actions to fight climate change. National Geo added details beyond what the president said.
As the ocean heats up due to global warming, Arctic sea ice has been locked in a downward spiral. Since the late 1970s, the ice has retreated by 12 percent per decade, worsening after 2007, according to NASA. May 2014 represented the third lowest extent of sea ice during that month in the satellite record, according to the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC).
Ice loss is accelerated in the Arctic because of a phenomenon known as the feedback loop: Thin ice is less reflective than thick ice, allowing more sunlight to be absorbed by the ocean, which in turn weakens the ice and warms the ocean even more, NASA says.
Because thinner ice is flatter, it allows melt ponds to accumulate on the surface, reducing the reflectiveness of the ice and absorbing more heat. (See pictures of our melting world in National Geographic magazine.)
“You hear reports all the time in the media about this,” Valdés said. “Until you have a hard-copy map in your hand, the message doesn’t really hit home.”
(More at National Geo’s site.)
At the last edition of the National Geographic Atlas, a video described why and how changes were made.
We used to think the old Earth was so massive, little could humans do to change it. While it’s probably still true the rock will survive after humans are extinct, we now know we can foul our nest enough to make it uncomfortable, or impossible for our species to stay here.
Global warming is changing the planet. Maps must be changed to show the new face.
Have we acted soon enough, and hard enough to save space for humans to live?
Tip of the old scrub brush to Chris Tackett on Twitter.
April 28, 2014
From BusinessWorld, a publication in India:
Even as India bats for biodiversity investments at a UN convention of experts from 193 countries, the planet is staring at an imminent crisis that could wipe out life as we know it.
Compiled by Yashodhara Dasgupta
Click Here To Download Infographic
Sources: International Union for Conservation of Nature,
World Wide Fund for Nature, Ministry of Environment and Forests
Graphic: Sajeev Kumarapuram
(This story was published in Businessworld Issue Dated 22-10-2012)
– See more at: http://www.businessworld.in/news/business/environment/the-losing-world/570570/page-1.html#sthash.mmSk4DDw.dpuf
This would be a good poster for geography, biology, general science and world history courses. Can your drafting class print this out for you in poster format?
When all of the “coal mine canaries” on Earth die out, how much longer have humans left to live on Earth?
What hope have we, with yahoos like this leading us in Congress?
April 25, 2014
Poster from BioMed Central:
Poster from BioMed Central for World Malaria Day 2014
Time for a big push to smash the disease’s hold on humanity, maybe eradicate it. Are you in?
No, DDT is not the answer, not even much of AN answer.
How can you help, right now?
- Send $10 to Nothing But Nets. Bednets are dramatically more effective than just insecticides, in preventing malaria infections and saving lives. Your $10 donation will save at least one life.
- Write to your Congressional delegation, and urge them to increase funding to the President’s Malaria Initiative. Malaria does well when people in non-malaria regions turn their backs on the problem. Malaria declines with constant attention to nation-wide and continent-wide programs to prevent the disease, by diminishing habitat for mosquitoes, curing the disease in humans so mosquitoes have no well of disease to draw from, and preventing mosquitoes from biting humans, with window screens, education on when to stay indoors, and bednets.
November 13, 2013
Photo and caption from Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel: Does Lake Michigan’s record low mark beginning of new era for Great Lakes? At least 150 years of rhythmic pulses in Lake Michigan’s water levels appear to have shifted abruptly with loss of winter ice. Photo by Mark Hoffman, Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel
Don’t get complacent, yet. Has enough water fallen in the Great Lakes drainage area in the past six months to change this situation at all? From the New York Times last June:
Drought and other factors have created historically low water marks for the Great Lakes, putting the $34 billion Great Lakes-St. Lawrence Seaway shipping industry in peril, a situation that could send ominous ripples throughout the economy.
Water levels in the Great Lakes have been below their long-term averages during the past 14 years, and this winter the water in Lakes Michigan and Huron, the hardest-hit lakes, dropped to record lows, according to the Army Corps of Engineers. Keith Kompoltowicz, the chief of watershed hydrology with the corps’s Detroit district, said that in January “the monthly mean was the lowest ever recorded, going back to 1918.”
While spring rains have helped so far this year, levels in all five Great Lakes are still low by historical standards, so getting through the shallow points in harbors and channels is a tense affair.
It’s not just storms, rising sea levels, and melting glaciers, you know.
The Great Lakes from space. The Great Lakes are the largest glacial lakes in the world. NASA photo via Wikipedia
Great Lakes in Sunglint (NASA, International Space Station, 06/14/12) (Photo credit: NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center)
May 1, 2013
See this United Nations Development Program ten-minute video that, to the wise and concerned, lays out the stakes of delaying action against human-caused climate change.
Without enough funding, NGOs work to help farmers getting hammered in the Southern Philippines, and other places.
In the Southern Philippines, farmers’ lives and the weather are intimately interwoven, but something is changing, now that the rains in Agusan del Norte are too heavy, the sun shines too fiercely. Now there’s hope for poor farmers with the community-based approach monitoring and Weather Index-Based Insurance packages, to warn people when heavy weather is on the way.
Though, I do weary of the astonishing abuse of acronyms in this work-of-the-angels. “WIBI?”
Incidentally, though the phrase doesn’t appear anywhere in this material, this is exactly the sort of work carried on by the UN’s Agenda 21 project. Doesn’t look subversive to me.
Tip of the old scrub brush to the UNDP and ILO Tweet:
Map of the Philippines with Agusan del Norte highlighted. Wikipedia image