Geog 200
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Military industrial complex: These 15 countries have the largest defense budgets

Military industrial complex: These 15 countries have the largest defense budgets | Geog 200 |
World defense spending is expected to go up for the first time in five years, thanks to China and Russia.

Via Seth Dixon
Jessica Rieman's insight:

Russia is the third highest goverment military that spends around 143 million people lived in Russia in 2012 and they spent around $475 per person on it's military. Russia compared to China and the US is another story the US is number one in who spent the most on their military forces at $600.4 billion. As far as China is concerened it comes in at number two at spending around  $112.2 billion. These numbers make sense especially for the power house that China is and how their values of militarism affect their spending and their way of society/life.

Giovanni Sonego's curator insight, February 13, 2014 7:48 AM

Con 25,2 miliardi di dollari L'Italia si piazza 14esima, prima dell'Iran

Oltre alla spesa complessiva, per i primi 10 paesi è riportato anche l'ammontare di spese militari pro capite.

Stati Uniti 2.000 $

Cina 83 $

Russia 475 $

Arabia Saudita 2.100 $ 

Regno Unito 900 $

Francia 797 $

Giappone, meno di 400 $

Germania 450 $

India 29 $

Brasile 175 $

E l'Italia? Basta dividere. Sono 413 $ a persona.

Ogni anno, la mia famiglia dà ben 2.065 $ alla difesa.

Edgar Manasseh Jr.'s curator insight, March 7, 10:00 PM

Wow looking at all these defense military budgets show why some economies are not producing well, but at the same time its astonishing how much money is spent protecting homelands. It will grow in the next 5 years, and hopefully i'll be around to see what has changed who has taken the top position because i feel as if their will be a shift in the tides.

Jared Medeiros's curator insight, March 9, 6:10 PM

Not surprised at many names on the list, but am surprised at The US figure, how much it costs per American, and at the gap between The US and China.  Its scary to see some of the names on the list though and wonder if they are using that money for defense, or an offensive attack.

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Guam profile

Guam profile | Geog 200 |
Provides an overview of Guam, which is home to a key US military base in the Pacific Ocean
Jessica Rieman's insight:

This article is talking abut the overview of Guam in general and what the tourist rates are and at what time the most income per capita comes in to the equation. 

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Rescooped by Jessica Rieman from Geography Education!

Pacific Islanders transform Utah’s football scene

Pacific Islanders transform Utah’s football scene | Geog 200 |
New demographic study in California reveals nation’s changing face. Plus how Pacific Islanders changed high school football in Utah and why a Somali Bantu band from Vermont is in demand around the country.

Via Seth Dixon
Jessica Rieman's insight:

Pacific islanders transform the Utah football team. Yes, that's right now football has a more diverse team roster and they said they are going to keep on expanding to receive top players from these countries and states in order to build a new kind of diverse team. 

Seth Dixon's curator insight, February 4, 2013 12:40 PM

This news article of 'odds and ends' has some interesting geographic content.  Having lived in Utah for many years, I can attest to the fact that the "Polynesian Pipeline" for Utah schools is incredibly important and represents a chain migration that has culturally shifted both the 'host' and 'migrant' population.  The 'haka' is now institutionized as a part of Intermountain West football culture.   

Also in this article:

--Hispanics to outnumber whites in California by 2014

--Somali Bantu band from Burlington, VT in demand across the country

Tags: migration, culture, diffusionreligion.

Jess Deady's curator insight, May 4, 2014 10:06 PM

Going to school in another place is a great experience. For these pacific islanders they get the chance to get an education in the U.S. while playing a game they love. Utah was the first of many states to start this trend and now other states are trying to do the same.

Bob Beaven's curator insight, April 26, 4:28 PM

This article shows how ethnic groups who come the US adopt the culture of the country in their own unique way.  Polynesians are known for being great at football due to their size, and some even make it into the NFL.  However, the reason many Pacific Islanders come to the US is for better opportunity and education than they would have had at home.  It is interesting to see how the face of a sport can change, and how some ethnic groups who come to the nation are drawn towards certain sports.  Whereas Dominicans love Baseball, Pacific Islanders love Football.  In fact, Troy Palamalu, who just retired from the Steelers during the offseason has Polynesian heritage and he was a great football player in his prime.  The inclusion of the haka into football games out west,  as noted by Professor Dixon, is also interesting due to the fact that parts of Polynesian culture are becoming part of American sport culture as well. 

Rescooped by Jessica Rieman from Geography Education!

What is a Hotspot?

1) What is a hotspot? A volcanic "hotspot" is an area in the upper mantle from which heat rises in a plume from deep in the Earth. High heat and lower pressure at the base of the mantle facilitates melting of the rock. This melt, called magma, rises through cracks to the surface and forms volcanoes. As the tectonic plate moves over the stationary hot spot, the volcanoes are rafted away and new ones form in their place.

Via Seth Dixon
Jessica Rieman's insight:

This video entails that mantel and where a hotspot for a volcanic eruption will take place. This video depicts the way at which a hot spot is located and what makes it erupt and cause an eruption in the firt place. It goes step by step ways to see the many different forms of volcanoes and where they start and end up at.

Brian Wilk's curator insight, March 23, 6:49 PM

The first video dumbs it down nicely for people like me. The tectonic plate moves roughly three inches a year, as the plate moves the magma stream stays in the same place, providing the foundation for the first island. The weight of the island actually deforms the plate and  the magma is temporarily stifled. Once the plate moves away from the weight of the island a new hotspot is formed and a new island forms in the same way, thus making the Hawaiian islands a string of islands. 

The second video details how Oahu lost 20 trillion pounds of rock eons ago and this is why the island has such a unique shape. It lost an estimated twenty miles of island into the ocean. Fascinating stuff for a neophyte like me!

Danielle Lip's curator insight, April 22, 9:46 PM

While watching this video you can learn a lot about a hotspot in just 2 minutes, understanding that a hotspot is an area in the upper mantle in which heat rises and slowly begins to expand, building up pressure. The magma, which is hot rises and the cold matter sinks. the magma rises through the cracks and the plates actually carry the volcano. How did the whole idea of a volcano occur? Who knows where these volcanos are?  The hotspot can cause volcanos to erupt or even cause the volcanos to spread out, who knew a hotspot could be such a huge influence on the world, causing massive landforms and causing much tragedy.

Louis Mazza's curator insight, May 6, 10:33 AM

What is a hotspot? It is a source of localized energy from the seafloor that creates volcanoes. It is not just a shallow reservoir nor a pipe filled with liquid. It is a constant stream of magma that does not move. Simple the plate move over it creating a row of multiple volcanoes, such as the Hawaiian Islands. When the magma erupts thru the surface the magma then turns to lava, and dries to rock. This process repeats until the built up lava is a volcano, still with hotspot in the middle. The plate moves and the hotspot creates a new volcano.

                This is interesting because hotspots are always changing geography, and causing map makers and teachers everywhere to learn new islands. 

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Highly concentrated population distribution

Highly concentrated population distribution | Geog 200 |

"Only 2% of Australia's population lives in the yellow area. "

Via Seth Dixon
Jessica Rieman's insight:

Only 2% of Australia's population lives in the yellow area which is very surprising because who is living in the rest of the area in Australia. What is happening to the natural sources and the resources that help the economy and where do they fit in especially in this map. 

Jason Schneider's curator insight, April 9, 11:14 PM

Apparently, 2% of Australia's population lives mostly away from the coast between Australia and the ocean. Even though many countries have people who mostly live closer to the coast rather than closer to the middle at any given country, Australia has one of the lowest percentages of people living away from the coast that separates its country and the ocean. The main reason why many people rather live near the coast of a country is obviously because it's closer to the water. People rather live near the coast for fishing activities, farming and accessing to world trade. Also as you can see, most of the eastern part of Australia has many people that live in Australia. In that case, there are many tourists from Oceanic islands that visit the east side of Australia seeing as Oceania is east of Australia. Lastly, the middle/yellow area of Australia contains many desert areas and open grasslands so people would barely be able to live in that region.

Jared Medeiros's curator insight, April 28, 5:49 PM

This seems to look like how many countries in the world are settled, with high populations in certain locations of a country along a coast line.  Its obvious here in Austrailia that there is a low population in the Outback since it can be very hot in this desert area and not a lot of vegitation or rainfall for agriculture.

Lora Tortolani's curator insight, May 4, 10:59 PM

After looking at the pictures from Buzzfeed, I can totally understand why people don't live in too many places in Australia.  The snakes alone are enough to make me never even want to visit.  Australians have to watch their backs every time they leave the house.  That is not something that float my boat.  Also, even if there aren't enough reptiles to get you grossed out, the hail could kill ya!

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Six-Legged Giant Finds Secret Hideaway, Hides For 80 Years

Six-Legged Giant Finds Secret Hideaway, Hides For 80 Years | Geog 200 |
The insect is so large — as big as a human hand — it's been dubbed a "tree lobster." It was thought to be extinct, but some enterprising entomologists scoured a barren hunk of rock in the middle of the ocean and found surviving Lord Howe Island...


Island Biogeography is endlessly fascinating and provides some of the most striking species we have on Earth.  The physical habitat is fragmented and the genetic diversity is limited.  Within this context, species evolve to fill ecological niches within their particular locale.  This NPR article demonstrates the story of but one of these incredible species that never could have evolved on the continents.  In modern society, more extinctions are happening on islands than anywhere else as 'specialist' species are in greater competition with 'generalists.' 

Via Seth Dixon
Jessica Rieman's insight:

When reading I found out that they call it "Ball's Pyramid"because that is what is left from the last volcano that emerged from the sea about 7 million years ago."British naval officer named Ball was the first European to see it in 1788. It sits off Australia, in the South Pacific. It is extremely narrow, 1,844 feet high, and it sits alone.

What's more, for years this place had a secret. At 225 feet above sea level, hanging on the rock surface, there is a small, spindly little bush, and under that bush, a few years ago, two climbers, working in the dark, found something totally improbable hiding in the soil below. How it got there, we still don't know."

Joseph Thacker 's curator insight, April 25, 2014 10:35 AM

On Ball's Pyramid the stick insect is different than any other insect I have seen. The size of it is terrifying, as it as big as a human hand. There are many different kinds of animals or insects someone can find on remote islands, islands such as Madagascar, Australia and even on this small island, which is located off of Australia's coast in the Pacific.    

Jacob Crowell's curator insight, December 15, 2014 4:40 PM

Isolation can lead to some remarkable examples of evolution. This "tree lobster" is an example of that. On an island cut off from many predators and hold little resources, the tree lobster has found a way to survive.

Felix Ramos Jr.'s curator insight, May 7, 9:52 PM

A truly remarkable story.  A prehistoric 'stick' insect that lived on an island off the coast of Australia was obliterated by rats that came to the island on English ships.  Everyone thought they were extinct until one day some researchers found 24 of them living on a remote piece of land not too far from the insect's homeland.  This was an uninhabited piece of rock, essentially, with very little to offer any life form but the stick insects found just enough to survive.  How they got here is unknown but after the find and a sleepless zoo worker, this insect is flourishing in captivity.  The move to release them back into the wild is ongoing.

Rescooped by Jessica Rieman from Geography Education!

Aborigines threaten to shut Uluru

Aborigines threaten to shut Uluru | Geog 200 |
Aboriginal leaders threaten to ban tourists from a top Australian landmark in protest at "racist" government policies.

Via Seth Dixon
Jessica Rieman's insight:

 Australia is one of my most racially discriminated places in the world because of this there are alot of factors that play into these problems. "The so-called "intervention" in the Northern Territory was introduced by former Prime Minster John Howard's conservative government.Chronic disadvantage had led to Aboriginal life expectancy being 17 years below that of other Australians."

Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, April 24, 2014 8:15 PM

This article points out the political and cultural geography of Australia.  The legislation that the indigenous people sees as raciest and painting a picture of them as bad people may lead to their closing off on of Australia’s tourist attractions.

Kendra King's curator insight, April 13, 9:22 PM

I have an issue with the fact this legislation isn’t directly targeting the issue of child sex abuse. Rather the legislation focuses on farther off underlying factor like alcohol (I say this because the article never made a clear link to the use of such substance and the abuse). In a way, I can see why the Aboriginal leader could say it is a racial issue seeing as how their whole peoples style of living is being targeted. Now I am not sure if I would feel differently if the legislation was actually working, but as the article mentioned the legislation isn’t actually having a great enough impact. To me it feels the legislation was really about trying to improve their countries standard of living in regards to life expectancy, etc. Maybe that is because of the way the article read, but really given how indirectly the legislation acts I think there was an ulterior motive.  As such, I am of the opinion that trying to change someone’s way of life (even if it is at their own peril) isn’t right. Inform them if you want, but don’t have such bans because I think the people should be able to choose how they live their life. Unless I see more evidence to the impact of abuse, I say this is just an overreach of power by a modern area.


It seems that even though colonialism ended, the aboriginal way of life is still looked down upon. Under colonial times we learned how most of the colonist went to Africa because it was the "white man's burden" to "civilize". Australia wasn't too different. By looking down on these people, the colonist had no qualm about exterminating entire populations. At least the current leaders judgement of the Abortionist's way of life doesn't put the Abortionists entire life at risk. So it is better than the past, but no by much since the people's way of life is still in subject to constraint constrains that don't match how the society operates. I also think they were looked at in a hypocritical manner here too because alcohol and pron are all commodities sold throughout Australia without the same kind of restriction. 

I do think the life expectancy statistic and issue of child abuse is troubling. If a more supported cause of the problem were demonstrated, I would have to think pretty hard about regulating the society because I am not a huge fan of telling a local population how to live, yet there is clearly something going on that is harming the population.  

Bob Beaven's curator insight, April 26, 4:18 PM

The battle going on in this article is interesting because it is between the Australians of European ancestry and those of native ancestry.  The Aborigine community doesn't appreciate the fact that the Australian government is becoming paternalistic and setting up "racist" laws to fix a problem plaguing their community, child abuse.  It is also interesting to consider that as a response the Aborigines would shut down Uluru (Ayer's Rock) in protest.  The fact that tension exists between the two groups is not surprising however, due to the fact that the whites drove the Aborigines off their land and then put them in reservations (much like the United State's treatment of its Native American Population).  It is a shame that the Aborigines would shut down the tourist site just to teach the government a lesson, in a tourist sense of view.  However, it is also a great threat because it would hurt the pocketbook of the country so to speak and it could make the government change its policies that it is using to fix the problem in the Aboriginal communities.  The whole situation is complicated in my point of view because the problem should be fixed, but it needs to be handled in a way that the Aborigines do not feel discriminated against.

Rescooped by Jessica Rieman from Geography Education!

Assessing Online Sources

Assessing Online Sources | Geog 200 |

Tweet from Earth Pics (screenshot preserved for when it gets taken down).  Retweeted over 1,000 times in the first hour.

Via Seth Dixon
Jessica Rieman's insight:

This just shows that you can't believe everything you see on the internet. In this picture it is said to be of an island in Ireland but in reality it is in Thailand. People believe what they want to believe.

Linda Denty's curator insight, October 28, 2013 6:10 PM

Real or not"  Ireland or Tahiland?  Photoshopped or not? - check the length and shape of the shadow!. 

Tony Aguilar's curator insight, October 31, 2013 11:57 AM

students need to be very careful in the type of sources that they used to glean information. People can manipulate photos and suggest things as fact when they are completetly made up. It is understandable that Wikipedia can not be used as an entireyl reliable source because people have access to add whatever they want to the content matter. Photoshop and other online tools can be used to trick people into beleiving certain things. This photo claiming to be from ireland is really from Thailand is a small island but the castle itself on the top os photoshoped and the image was retweeded like crazy within the first hor. wee must check our sources and make sure that we are getting good primary or at least good secondary services from legit websites.

morgan knight's curator insight, October 8, 2014 1:00 PM

Before reading this article, I assumed that I was capable of telling fictional from factual information apart. But now, after having my eyes opened, I realize that the internet can truly play you like a puppet. From this article, I've now learned that there are more ways than one to judge the authenticity of a site. one such way is to search for an "original" copy of whatever it may be that you're researching. If none pop up, you have the true article.

Rescooped by Jessica Rieman from Geography Education!

Thailand flood reaches Bangkok

Thailand flood reaches Bangkok | Geog 200 |
Flood waters inundating Thailand north of Bangkok since July have made the journey south and reached the capital. The disaster is responsible for 400 deaths in Thailand and neighboring Cambodia and Vietnam.


Too much of a good thing (water) can literally be disastrous. 

Via Seth Dixon
Jessica Rieman's insight:

This flood being record breaking it was a flood that reached from Thailand to Bangkok. Seen from the images it was long lasting and took a toll of 400 deaths from this horrible disaster.

Joseph Thacker 's curator insight, April 19, 2014 1:17 PM
This flood started in northern Thailand and made its way south and affected the country’s capitol, Bangkok. When a large flood hits a country’s mega-city, it causes serious economic impacts. Also, Thailand is the world's biggest rice exporter, but the floods have destroyed over a quarter of the country's crops. Damages from this flood caused billions of dollars worth of damage.
Jake Red Dorman's curator insight, November 20, 2014 9:15 PM

The flooding that has been going on since July, has now reached Bangkok. It is the cause to over about 400 deaths. The flooding has flooded over a quarter of Thailand's rice crops, and rice is their biggest exporter. The government has given the people a 5 day period to evacuate the area. These damages are sought to cost about 6 billion dollars. I looked at all of the pictures presented in the article and a couple of them really stood out to me. One thing that caught my eye was the animals. Along with the flood and the destruction, also comes the animals that live in the water. there are pictures of snakes and crocodiles or alligators that the people in Thailand have caught. Another picture that caught my eye was the pictures of the streets and roads. I looks like Venice out there! The streets are completely flooded and all the people have their own little rafts that they now have to call home now since their homes are destroyed from the flooding. the last photo i liked was the kid (assuming from arm size that it's a kid) carrying money in one hand while his head was fully submerged in the water. This shows to me how flooded some places were that people couldn't even touch the ground to walk, but he had to swim under water to keep the money dry for whatever he was going to purchase. Its terrible what these people are going through over in Thailand.

Lena Minassian's curator insight, April 9, 10:14 PM

Many of us have experienced some small type of a flood but I can't imagine having a flood wipe out my home, especially if it came from another area. The flood in  northern Thailand has reached Bangkok damaging numerous things in it's way, even killing 400 people. This flood has reached many borders and those countries should be concerned and prepared if it does reach them so they know how to respond. Thailand is the world's biggest rice exporter and this flood has wiped everything out, which effect multiple countries. Damages from this flood could cost six billion dollars which has become their worst flood in 50 years. The pictures from this flood are devastating and these people are allowed to evacuate but many don't have a place to go. 

Rescooped by Jessica Rieman from Geography Education!

Education Around the World

Education Around the World | Geog 200 |

"A glimpse inside the life of students from Senegal to Vietnam and China."

Via Seth Dixon
Jessica Rieman's insight:

Students in China take their college entrance exam lasting 9hours. To prevent cheating they all take it at the same time with 1,200 in an exam hall. In Guangdong province, on July 9, 2007. 

Tony Hall's curator insight, March 11, 2013 8:48 PM

Little bit different to my school:)

Nancy Watson's curator insight, March 15, 2013 5:13 PM

What does this do to your ethnocentric beliefs?

Alicia Grace Lawson O'Brien's curator insight, July 16, 2014 3:07 PM

This picture is amazing to me! It is so difficult to think about how different education looks in other countries.

Rescooped by Jessica Rieman from Geography Education!

Google Earth in China

Google Earth in China | Geog 200 |

This gallery of Google Earth Screen shots primarily from Yunnan Province in Southern China (bordering Vietnam and Burma) brings some keen spatial analysis to those unfamiliar with the region.  This is also a great example of using geospatial technologies to interpret the cultural landscape--the merger of 'people and pixels' as the textbook of the same name encourages with classrooms.  While the quality of this work is above what would be expected of students, a Google Earth project designed to get students to reassess the spatial dynamics within their neighborhood or home state could lead some fantastic projects. 

Via Seth Dixon
Jessica Rieman's insight:

In this description followed by images there are all types of vintage points in order to show a clear image of where in relation a time and place a certain society/ country is and to give some background info on what you are looking at by seeing it in multiple images.

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Kim Jong-un's Emmental envoys rejected by French cheese school - Telegraph

Kim Jong-un's Emmental envoys rejected by French cheese school - Telegraph | Geog 200 |
College in eastern France refuses North Korean requests to train three experts in French cheese-making to cater to despot Kim Jong-un's penchant for fromage
Jessica Rieman's insight:

No to the cheese school in France for the North Korean delagets. This article talks about the realization of France because they do not want to create a cheese school where North Korea will be active participants in the operation.

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Rescooped by Jessica Rieman from Geography Education!

U.S. Intelligence Says Water Shortages Threaten Stability

U.S. Intelligence Says Water Shortages Threaten Stability | Geog 200 |

"Competition for increasingly scarce water in the next decade will fuel instability in regions such as South Asia and the Middle East that are important to U.S. national security, according to a U.S. intelligence report."


Geographic thinking is about uncovering the spatial connections between issues that on the surface might not seem related.  Multinational river basins are a perfect example of environmental resources that demand international cooperation for successful management, and it regions of scarcity and population growth, it is easy to envision clashing viewpoints on how to fairly share such resources.


Discussion questions: What geographic themes are evident in this article? What geographic problems could exacerbate the problem? What could alleviate these issues in the future?

Via Seth Dixon
Jessica Rieman's insight:

Water is a huge resources and obviously something that we use everyday and in the US take for granted because there are many countries suffereing from sortages such as this nation. Which of the following it is threatening not just the stability of the nation but the stability of the people and the society that make up that nation.

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Beijing's Pollution

Beijing's Pollution | Geog 200 |

Via Seth Dixon
Jessica Rieman's insight:

Beijing's Pollution is depicted throug this picture which shows that the factory is the equivalent of the "yello brik road" in this instance because it is where everything happens and where all the work is done and then the city landscape is depicted as cold in the dark grey scale. It depicts not only the spacial regognition but the actual, socitetal views on each place in relation to eachother.

Jacob Crowell's curator insight, November 24, 2014 2:21 PM

Great picture to show the two sectors of China's society. In Beijing we see the combination of industry and post industrialized. 

Nicole Kearsch's curator insight, November 24, 2014 11:40 PM

This picture taken by a photographer with the perfect lighting is brilliant....that is, if you're into deceiving people that the pollution from these power plants stays away from the higher class businesses and residences.  Looking at this picture you see the smoke coming from the power plant in China far in the distance creating a yellowish hue that could be thought to be from the sun.  Then closer in the scene we see what appears to be businesses and potentially some peoples homes.  This area is in a totally different color from the yellow we see to be associated with the pollution from the power plant.  Here we see a blue, commonly associated with clean water, covering the entirety of this area.  With the difference in colors these places seem to be as different as possible from each other.  In reality though, smog doesn't just stay in one area of the city where it is produced, but spreads throughout the entirety of a city.  There are no restraints on where the pollution can and can't be, it is free flowing into communities where people work and live.  If you're trying to sell a house here this picture wouldn't be a bad idea to use, although most natives aren't oblivious to what is really going on.

Hector Alonzo's curator insight, December 15, 2014 8:00 PM

This picture is interesting to say the least, it depicts two different cities, even though it is the same city. the picture does a good job at showing the major problem that pollution is causing to Beijing. While showing a smog surrounded city behind a clean, yet clouded looking city, drives this point of pollution home and raises the question is putting large factories and toxic fumes in the air, more important than the well being of your citizens?

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'Largest' waste shipment to Japan

'Largest' waste shipment to Japan | Geog 200 |
A shipment of radioactive waste arrives in Japan from Cumbria, as part of the ongoing programme of cleaning up the Sellafield site.
Jessica Rieman's insight:

This dilemma of a shipment of toxic radioactive waste arrived in Japan as a cleaning up renewals formation from Cumbria. there are many ideas on what to do with it and all we know that we do not want to do is to dump it in the ocean but that might be a form of wasteland removal. 

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Why the Plan to Dig a Canal Across Nicaragua Could Be a Very Bad Idea

Why the Plan to Dig a Canal Across Nicaragua Could Be a Very Bad Idea | Geog 200 |

"By the end of this year, digging could begin on a waterway that would stretch roughly 180 miles across Nicaragua to unite the Atlantic and Pacific oceans."

Via Seth Dixon
Jessica Rieman's insight:

Although Nicaragua would benefit from this financially the whole country would be carved up because of the other nations total rule over the imports and exports in trading routes.

David Lizotte's curator insight, February 3, 1:50 PM

Just as I finished scooping the past article dealing with this topic, I scroll down and see this story. I had to read it. I wanted to learn more about such a disastrous plan to build a canal. In return I found out that the plan has yet to be revealed. I most certainly do not change my opinion which I firmly expressed in my last scoop, in regards to this canal being idiotic.

An issue that stood out in this article deals with the Nicaraguan government not holding bids for the job and HKND walking out on top. It seems as if a few backdoor deals concerning a lot of money were made. Bold assumption I know... but so is assuming a canal will be built in Nicaragua! Ba-Zing

I am also interested in learning the credibility of HKND. It seems like an interesting company which is most certainly intertwined somehow with the Chinese Government. How else would an individual, Wang Jing,  come up with the 40 billion dollar purse to pursue this project. 

The potential environmental issues are infinite and effect other environments, both near and far geographically speaking, in a variety of negative ways. Its good to see a team of experts coming together to investigate the canals effects on the area. 

Lastly, the article clearly states how there is no need for the canal due to the Panama Canals newest developments and improvements. The canal can accommodate larger barge's thus increase trade and revenue. 

THe Nicaragua Canal is not a good idea.  

Louis Mazza's curator insight, February 6, 3:26 PM

The Chinese want to compete with the US on overseas trading and to do so they want to build their own canal through Nicaragua to rival the Panama Canal to the south.  This will lower the quality of Nicaragua’s drinking water but will greatly bolster the economy. If Nicaragua gets the opportunity to possess a major canal that can fit trader ships previously unable to fit through the Panama Canal this will be great for the people. Nicaragua has a very low country ranking so any economic support that this canal can generate will improve the living conditions of the inhabitants. 

Kendra King's curator insight, April 27, 4:53 PM

Form the perspective of the Nicaraguan Government, this project is a chance to get ahead economically regardless of the consequences to the environment and its population. As the article mentions, this is the second poorest country in the region, but the project could triple the economy's growth and strengthen employment. As a government leader who wants to be a more powerful country, a few causalities on the quest to economic prowess is nothing.  Especially because the government doesn't really have any other alternative ways to expand the economy that quickly with so much potential success. 


I think this project is part of a common trend seen throughout this class. When I read this it reminded me of the workers safety video in which Chinese companies let their employees jump on a crane without safety gear in order to cheaply complete a project.  Or how China allows their factories to run despite the mass pollution the industry is causing. It isn't like China is the only country to ever cut corners either. Before the US and Europe become switch from the industrial sector to the service sector, these countries employment laws and environmental laws were horrible (some could argue they still are actually). One of the scientist in this article, Myers, even touched on this point by saying he "there’s a touch of hypocrisy in outsiders from industrialized countries preaching environmental purity." Hypocritical or not, I really wish countries would learn the harm that came from the actions past industrial societies took to get ahead. Although, given the government's stance on this project, I really don't think that was the lesson learned. 


As a citizen of Nicaragua this is incredibly worrisome.  Their is the potential that the ecosystem is disturbed, which would have  many unpredictable consequences. Furthermore, the drinking supply could be destroyed. Since this area is already poor, the families of this area would have a hard time just up and leaving their homes. So for the sake of the citizens, I really hope that if the project moves forward there won't be many adverse complications. 

Rescooped by Jessica Rieman from Geography Education!

Aerial Photographs Catalogue the Life and Death of Volcanic Islands

Aerial Photographs Catalogue the Life and Death of Volcanic Islands | Geog 200 |

Volcanic islands can seem to appear out of nowhere, emerging from the ocean like breaching monsters of the deep. Below, Mika McKinnon explains how these odd geological formations are born, how they evolve, and how they eventually vanish back beneath the waves.

Via Seth Dixon
Jessica Rieman's insight:

In many cases these islands that become seriously dangerous started off being very small and then erupted causing formations of small islands next to them or attached and then creating erupting volcanic islands.

Danielle Lip's curator insight, April 22, 9:59 PM

It is extremely interesting to see how these volcanic islands are creating themselves, this article talks about how these islands are born and why they are being created. Countless eruptions are bringing these islands to above sea level, creating the island basically "below the waves." After each eruption occurs it seems that once the volcano hits the sea floor it starts to build upwards, being not only a volcano island but also a coral reef. Are there other volcanic islands enlarging around the world besides the ones already found? Rock is eventually turned into sand and the volcano underwater becomes dominant and still, where nothing is occurring and the sand begins to pile up, which goes to show how the island is building gradually. The sand can also slip as well as seen in the picture all the way to the right, where parts of the island sink in and the water takes over.

The volcanic islands that have been researched and found are Tahiti, Pinta which is a dry volcanic island, with dark lava flows staining its flanks and lastly is Maupiti whose tip is poking barely 213 meters above the sea.

It is crazy to think that such a geological formation can be created just by the sea alone, it is scary to think of what else could happen to this world, no one really knows and no one really will. I wonder what these volcanic islands will be like in a few years, if the same processes will occur or something new because as we know everything can change at the drop of a dime.


WILBERT DE JESUS's curator insight, April 27, 12:56 PM

This pictures show how most islands in the pacific ocean have formed. They rise, erode and then desapear.

Kristin Mandsager San Bento's curator insight, May 4, 12:33 PM

This is an amazing event.  It's crazy how they can be born and die.  Which begs the point, what will happen with Hawaii?  Why do some islands survive?  

Rescooped by Jessica Rieman from Geography Education!

Pink Lakes

Pink Lakes | Geog 200 |
Photo by Jean Paul Ferrero/Ardea/Caters News (via Exposing the Truth   Lake Hillier is a pink-coloured lake on Middle Island in Western Australia. Middle island is the largest of the islands a...

Via Seth Dixon
Jessica Rieman's insight:

This lake is so majestic and beautiful but how does it have this pink color? Well it gets the pink color from the sand it is surrounded by and is one of the largest Middle islands in Australia. 

Hector Alonzo's curator insight, December 15, 2014 11:44 PM

The pink lake, Lake Hillier,  located in Western Australia is stunning. The aerial view of the lake makes the lake seem unreal that is was is fascinating. What gives the lake its pink color is a mystery, but it may be from bacteria, but it shows how some places in the world are affected differently than others and it produces remarkable results.

Nicole Kearsch's curator insight, December 17, 2014 1:48 AM

Now this is bizarre.  A pink lake and no one is really sure as to why it is pink.  It is not on the top of my list of places to go swimming, that is for sure.  Although scientists don't seem too concerned about the safety of the lake for people but are curious as to what is causing the lake to be pink.  Thoughts on algea and bacteria levels or the amount of salt are included in the potential reasoning for the pink color.  Even on google earth you can see that the lake is in fact pink.  Even when scientists come to a conclusion as to what is causing the pink colored lake, as far as it isn't causing any environmental issues, I think that the lake should be left pink as a type of wonder of the world attraction for people to see.

Lena Minassian's curator insight, May 7, 11:54 AM

This article caught my eye because I have never seen a pink lake before. This lake is on Middle Island in Western Australia. The lake is 600 meters wide but the reasoning behind the color of it is still yet to be determined. White salt rims the lake and the color may be caused from a low nutrient concentration and even just bacteria. The pictures of this lake are beautiful and there is not anything like it. 

Rescooped by Jessica Rieman from Geography Education!

Lurking in the Deep

Lurking in the Deep | Geog 200 |
Divers on Australia's Great Barrier Reef recently snapped rare pictures of a wobbegong, or carpet shark, swallowing a bamboo shark whole.


The diversity of life on this planet and the ecosystems which such creatures live in is something that continually leaves me in awe at the wonders of the natural world.

Via Seth Dixon
Jessica Rieman's insight:

When I first saw this image I thought that this white shark was swimming into a chest or something anything except for another shark. Then when opening the article it was apparent that the shark was being eaten by another shark. 

Gregory S Sankey Jr.'s curator insight, September 1, 2014 10:38 AM

This article reminds me of another video i've seen recently of a grouper fish swallowing a 4-foot black tip shark whole. A fisherman caught that on camera while trying to reel in the shark. Time and time again I'm reminded that not everything in nature is as it seems and that the unexpected should be expected. 

This makes me want to buy some scuba gear and take some diving classes, I ought to conquer my fear of sharks by safely observing them with a research team! 

Jacob Crowell's curator insight, December 15, 2014 4:36 PM

Amazing photos, there are so many different kinds of life that exists in the Ocean. As the Great Barrier Reef falls victim to climate change and pollution, the number of species at risk is almost calculable. 

Hector Alonzo's curator insight, December 16, 2014 1:26 PM

Australia's marine life is amazing, being able to hide by blending in to their environment is a testament to the waters that Australia has. The diverse wildlife of Australia waters is shown to be an adaptive bunch and begs the question: How many more animals are out there that we do not know of?

Scooped by Jessica Rieman!

Myanmar democracy veteran mourned

Myanmar democracy veteran mourned | Geog 200 |
Hundreds of mourners pay their respects at the funeral of Myanmar pro-democracy veteran Win Tin, who served 19 years in prison for his activism.
Jessica Rieman's insight:

This story is about the horrific tragedy that took place. They are mourning the loss of their martyr. He did alot of work for the people and spent 19 years in jail for fighting for his people and the liberties that they deserve.  

No comment yet.
Rescooped by Jessica Rieman from Geography Education!

US Foreign Aid, 1946-2005

US Foreign Aid, 1946-2005 | Geog 200 |
Distribution of US Foreign Aid over time, 1946-2005...


This interactive graph is not visually intuitive and easy to interpret, but it is a wealth of information about the United States geopolitical policies throughout time in addition to it's humanitarian aid throughout the developing world.  For example, you can see that the aid to Vietnam from 1965-1973 exploded, and to Israel from 1976-2002.  In 1947, the United Kingdom (under the Marshall Plan) accounted for over half of all of the international aid.   

Via Seth Dixon
Jessica Rieman's insight:

In this graph it shows the US foreign aid over time from 1946-2005. In this diagram it shows the difference in 1965-1973 from Vietnam sky rocketed and the same thing happened in '76-2002 in Israel.  But the Marshall plan once enacted helped the UK people and other nations.

Rescooped by Jessica Rieman from Geography Education!

How Vietnam became a coffee giant

How Vietnam became a coffee giant | Geog 200 |

"Think of coffee and you will probably think of Brazil, Colombia, or maybe Ethiopia. But the world's second largest exporter today is Vietnam. How did its market share jump from 0.1% to 20% in just 30 years, and how has this rapid change affected the country?"


Via Seth Dixon
Jessica Rieman's insight:

This article depicts the many different types of coffee that are made in Vietnam and the trade that has led this country to manufacture coffee beans and other helpful resources i order to help the economy flourish. For example, 


Ca phe da - Coffee served on a bed of iceCa phe sua da - Coffee served with condensed milk, on iceCa phe trung - like a cappuccino, except with the addition of an egg or twoKopi luwak - The process of making coffee by feeding beans to civets - a type of weasel - and then roasting the excreted beans
Bob Beaven's curator insight, April 16, 3:38 PM

When Vietnam is thought of often the images of a war fought fifty years ago come to the minds of a majority of Americans, not the second largest coffee producer in the world.  Although many Vietnamese still prefer Tea over Coffee, selling the crop as an export has greatly helped the country's economy.  Coffee production also seems to be changing Vietnam, the country is not really a hardline communist country anymore, it has relations established with the United States and wanting to penetrate the US Market shows that the country does not hate the US.  However, the effects of the war make coffee farming a dangerous business in the country as there are many undetonated ordinances left in the nation from the Vietnam War.  Yet, the nation is forging ahead in coffee farming and it is greatly aiding the nation, today only 10 percent of the people in the country live below in the poverty line.

Lora Tortolani's curator insight, April 20, 2:48 PM

Even though Vietnamese people still drink tea today, they have turned to gowing and exporting coffee as one of their major sources of income.  This exportation has decreased those living under the poverty line from 60% to only 10% in the last 20 years. 

Jared Medeiros's curator insight, April 28, 5:24 PM

Vietnam definitly does not come to mind when thuinking globaly about the coffee giants of the world.  Its a good thing for their people though that the crop is booming.  60% under the poverty line down to 10% in 30 years is astonishing, and im sure the people of Vietnam are very grateful to have such a globaly desired good.  I would hate to see what the country would look like today if this resource was unavailable to them.

Rescooped by Jessica Rieman from Geography Education!

Laos May Bear Cost of Planned Chinese Railroad

Laos May Bear Cost of Planned Chinese Railroad | Geog 200 |
China wants a railroad linking it to Thailand and on to the Bay of Bengal in Myanmar, but some international groups warn that it may put a big burden on Laos.

Via Seth Dixon
Jessica Rieman's insight:

This article depicts the major problem between trade route going through Laos. Laos is upset because they have no input in anything even though the railways will intersect through their country by the Chinese and their railways for imports and exports. "China wants a railroad linking it to Thailand and on to the Bay of Bengal in Myanmar, but some international groups warn that it may put a big burden on Laos". China wants to link to  Bangkok and then on to the Bay of Bengal in Maymar expanding China’s  enormous trade with Southeast Asia. Creating no way for Laos to get out of this deal though there has been some hesitation there will not be any stopping the maintenance of the soon to be power railways suffocating Laos. 

Joseph Thacker 's curator insight, April 19, 2014 7:12 PM

The Chinese-financed railroad is being built to pass thru Laos into the mega-city of Bangkok. China wants this railroad built to further expand its trading with Southeast Asia. Laos, a very poor and rural country may see small profits from this project. The most powerful country in this area, China, should have no problem building this railroad in its weak and poor neighboring country, Laos.  

Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, April 24, 2014 2:18 PM

The article discusses how China’s wish to build a rail road through southeast Asia will most likely incur a high cost from the country of Laos that the rail road will go through.  China is anxious to regain its power in the area and its terms for the rail road will leave Laos severely indebted to China to such an extent that many see it as China trying to make Laos a vessel state.

Nicole Kearsch's curator insight, December 12, 2014 2:18 AM

This is interesting, Laos pays for a railroad that they can't afford because China wants it? Now how does that make sense.  These people that barely make enough money to live as it is can no where near afford to have a railroad put through their country especially when they won't be able to reap many of the benefits.  Even with China's letting the country borrow the money to fund the project not only do they have to pay back the money but also give China minerals throughout the duration of the loan.  The people of Laos need to really think about the consequences to this railroad could be, both good and bad, for the country before any agreements are made to construct the railroad.

Rescooped by Jessica Rieman from Geography Education!

A Keyhole into Burma

A Keyhole into Burma | Geog 200 |
On my last afternoon in Bagan, I went in search of a meal that would serve as both lunch and dinner, before boarding my flight...


As a notoriously closed society, glimpses into Burma become all the more important as Burma shows signs of (possibly) opening up politically for the first time in decades.

Via Seth Dixon
Jessica Rieman's insight:

This article depicts the differences and the little things that we in the USA take for granted for instance in this case it is a cd that is known as the "Western" type of misc and mass media culture that has been transported in this Burmese society.  It truly is the little things such as the Robbie Williams CD that is being depicted as not only the Western musical society but also being grouped with Bob Marley songs that would depict from the Burmese translation the Western society. And even though the people in this society don't know what the lyrics mean they can still be moved by the melody.  

Matt Mallinson's comment, November 27, 2012 5:53 PM
It's good to see a place like Burma is showing signs of opening up politically, it shows other poor countries could do the same.
Cam E's curator insight, April 8, 2014 12:23 PM

Yet another collection of pictures I'm scooping, but this time there's over 100 of them! Getting a western view into the insulated society of Burma is a rare opportunity, this shows some interesting pastimes such as Water buffalo surfing, but also things of major cultural significance, such as the importance of Buddhism.

Hector Alonzo's curator insight, December 15, 2014 10:51 PM

I found the fact that the government of Burma banned certain music, it seems like an odd thing to refuse the people of the country, but we forget that it is the small things that we take for granted in the US, that are seen as luxuries in other parts of the world and that is an interesting idea to wrap your mind around.

Scooped by Jessica Rieman!

Obama faces headwinds on Trans-Pacific Partnership in East Asia trip

Obama faces headwinds on Trans-Pacific Partnership in East Asia trip | Geog 200 |
With talks faltering in Japan and support flagging in Malaysia, Obama's dream of trade liberalisation nears make-or-break moment
Jessica Rieman's insight:

"With talks faltering in Japan and support flagging in Malaysia, Obama's dream of trade liberalisation nears make-or-break moment" This article depicts the on going debate between the US, East Asia and, The Trans Pacific routes. The Trans-Pacific routes are seen as a very dicey area because we as a nation do not want the Asian control to beome larger without being allies.

No comment yet.
Rescooped by Jessica Rieman from Geography Education!

Struggle For Smarts? How Eastern And Western Cultures Tackle Learning

Struggle For Smarts? How Eastern And Western Cultures Tackle Learning | Geog 200 |
For the most part in American culture, intellectual struggle in school children is seen as an indicator of weakness, while in Eastern cultures it is not only tolerated, it is often used to measure emotional strength.

Via Seth Dixon
Jessica Rieman's insight:

In this article the resources or lack there of are a huge issue for the children in these schools. It makes me think of our society and the technology and other resources that we have aviable to and dont think twice about compared to this society that has nothing. This also triggered my mind of a prospective teacher as to thinking of the differnces between learning styles in the regions.

Malcolm Haines's curator insight, September 21, 2014 12:20 AM

This is an important time in world history for learning how we all learn. Ultimately East vs West on the cultural field will no longer apply.

Samuel D'Amore's curator insight, December 17, 2014 5:31 PM

Today the a lot of focus is being spent on the differences between western and eastern education. A large catalyst in this research is the rise of East Asian economies and the fear many in the west have that their nations are quickly becoming the new under dogs. While their is a difference in education methods one must also wonder if it partially comes down to the government and cultural importance placed on education. During the Cold War America placed a ton of interest and support on our education but after peace came our nation education declined across the board. This might be similar in East Asia while in stead of seeking to overcome the Russians they are seeking to over come their current place in the global community.

Lora Tortolani's curator insight, April 20, 2:25 PM

I actually feel this is a great way to teach students, we just aren’t used to it in America.  The students who already know what they’re doing should be helping those who struggle.  When we boast about how well someone does at something, it can actually discourage the student who doesn’t understand.  It is definitely a tricky situation to be in, but I can understand why.