The Seattle Natural Hazard Explorer lets you explore where different parts of the city of Seattle, Washington are most vulnerable to potentially catastrophic geological events like earthquakes (previously) and volcanoes. It is one of many visualizations or choropleths that connect ever-changing data with explorable geographic locations, such as an Atlas for a Changing Planet and Syria: Epicenter of a Deepening Refugee Crisis
You were taught in school that the rain forest is like the lungs of our planet.
It’s not that simple.
It’s not that simple.
UN Climate Report: We Must Focus On 'Decarbonization', and It Won't Wreck the Economy - "The basic message is simple: We share a planet. Let's start acting like it." [more inside]
The woman who lost a dog and gained 200 sloths. 'Monique Pool first fell in love with sloths when she took in an orphan from a rescue centre. Since then many sloths have spent time in her home on their way back to the forest - but even she found it hard to cope when she had to rescue 200 at once' a Sloth Armageddon. [more inside]
Explore different views into this global timelapse built from global, annual composites of Landsat satellite images. Watch change across the planet's surface beginning as early as 1984. See Vegas grow! Rainforests Shrink! Coastlines expand, and lakes vanish!
The vanishing groves: A chronicle of climates past and a portent of climates to come – the telling rings of the bristlecone pine.
Previously 1 , Previously 2)
I am sorry that Wangari Maathai, inspiring Nobel Peace Prize winner famous for tree-planting programme, has died.
Green tells the story of one orangutan captured and brought to a rehabilitation facility after her home is logged and converted to a palm oil plantation. This award winning documentary is a powerful indictment of the palm oil and logging industries in South Asia. It is also another voice in the crowd drawing attention to the potential ecological consequences of growing dependence on biofuels. [more inside]
Inspired by its 10th anniversary, the Earth Observatory has pulled together a special series of NASA satellite images documenting how the world has changed. From these images, Wired Science has made 5 videos, presenting convenient time-lapse views of the world changing (mainly) because of human actions. Watch the urbanization of Dubai, specifically the growth of Palm Jumeirah. See the Aral Sea dry up - once the fourth largest lake, down to 10 percent of its original size (marked by the thin black line in the video) by 2007. View the clearing the Amazon, as observed from above the state of Rondônia in western Brazil. Behold the return of Mesopotamia's Wetlands, now in the process of being restored from near total destruction under the regime of Saddam Hussein. Witness the impact of drought on Southern Utah's Lake Powell, where water level dropped from 20 million to 8 million acre-feet from 2000 to 2005.
Biofuels worsen global warming, according to two studies published in Science last week. Current US biofuel policies would double carbon emissions over the gasoline alternative. More details: ScienceExpress fulltext pdf of study #1, powerpoint summary of study #1, abstract of study #2, summary of both, policy recommendations pdf (via: 1, 2). [more inside]
"So by this analysis dead-tree magazines have a smaller net carbon footprint than web media. We cut down trees and put them in the ground. From a climate change perspective, this is a good thing" explains Chris Anderson, Wired Magazine's editor-in-chief. While some decry this type of carbon footprint accounting as "cheating", the paper industry has lately been eager to convince the public that they are carbon-neutral.
Good news for the world's forests. "...the researchers, using new analytical techniques, calculated that in the last 15 years forests had actually expanded in 22 of the 50 countries with the most forest, and that many others were poised to make the transition from deforestation to reforestation in the coming decades." Unfortunately, countries like Brazil and Indonesia aren't doing so well.....
"When they emerged after 50 yards, the landscape no longer looked anything like the southern edge of the Amazon forest. It looked like Iowa." In Mato Grosso, Brazil the rainforest is vanishing. And all because of soybeans and beef. "If we were an aggressive tribe, we would have killed the land owners already," said Tupxi, one of the canoeists, who estimated his age at 77. " good Washpost story...
Tigers bite back. Endangered Sumatran tigers have taken the destruction of their habitat into their own mouths by killing three & mauling several other illegal loggers.
end of the worlds forests? are there other very important issues for the world that are slipping by us while the we are caught up with the problems in the middle east the the "war on terror"? should there be US leadership in this area?
Pro-Deforestation book on the way to your local elementary school. (via cruel.com)
And you thought US environmental policies were bad. Europe is facing a major environmental crisis that it seems unwilling or unable to act on -- deforestation, flooding, desertification and more. From the article: "One fifth of the land in Spain is already so degraded that it is turning to desert" -- and it's as bad if not worse elsewhere on the continent & in Britain.