Geography Education
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Geography Education
Supporting geography educators everywhere with current digital resources.
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Massive landslide adds to ‘unprecedented’ damage along scenic Highway 1 in Big Sur area

Massive landslide adds to ‘unprecedented’ damage along scenic Highway 1 in Big Sur area | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"A massive mudslide along the California coast.  Millions tons of rock/dirt, about 1/3 mile of roadway covered 35-40 feet deep.”

Seth Dixon's insight:

A steep slope, unstable ground, and changing moisture content result is this spectacular (and horrifying) example of how the Earth beneath our feet might not be as permanent as we expect it to be.

 

Questions to Ponder: Which type of mass wasting is seen in this particular example?  What conditions would lead to other types of mass wasting?  

 

Tags: physicalCalifornia, geomorphology, erosion, landforms.

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New Zealand quake lifted seabed by 2m

New Zealand quake lifted seabed by 2m | Geography Education | Scoop.it
The 7.8 magnitude earthquake that hit New Zealand’s South Island lifted up the seabed by two metres, pushing it above the ocean’s surface.
Seth Dixon's insight:

Plates on the Earth's crust typically move forward at very slowly (about the same speed as the fingernail growth).  While that is the usual, plates snag along the edges and pressure can build over the years, only to lead to explosive, quick changes like happened recently in New Zealand.  This complex series of tremors has people disconnected as much of the physical infrastructure has be damaged

 

Tags: New Zealandphysical, tectonicstransportation, geology, geomorphology.

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Earth Science Memes

Earth Science Memes | Geography Education | Scoop.it
This link is where you will find funny science pictures, jokes, current events and other miscellaneous things pertaining to science.
Seth Dixon's insight:

Because we all need a laugh sometimes...and if we can teach something at the same time, then even better.   

 

Tagsphysical, geomorphology, funart.

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The Whale's Tail

The Whale's Tail | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"The Ballena Marine National Park is located in Puntarenas, at the South Pacific coast of Costa Rica." 

Seth Dixon's insight:

This National Park in Costa Rica is a delightful example of many things geographic.  Not only is the local biogeography make this a place famous for whales (ballena in Spanish), but the physical geography also resembles a whale's tail.  This feature is called a tombolo, where a spit connects an island or rock cluster to the mainland. Additionally, there is also a great community of citizen cartographers mapping out this park and the surrounding communities. 

 

Tagsbiogeography, environment, geomorphology, physicalwater, landforms.

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Alexander peters's curator insight, October 24, 2016 12:23 PM
This article was about the whale and how they were repopulating and how the whale hunting was banned in the 70s. I think this article was really good because use it talked about whales.
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Sinkhole looks like an abyss, recharges aquifer

Sinkhole looks like an abyss, recharges aquifer | Geography Education | Scoop.it
At this sinkhole, about 500 cubic feet of water per second is disappearing into the earth, the equivalent of an Olympic-sized swimming pool every three minutes, according to an engineer with the Edwards Aquifer Authority. For as much water reaches the aquifer at this spot, far more infiltrates through porous rock across South-central Texas.
Seth Dixon's insight:

Not all water runoff goes to rivers, lakes, and oceans.  Some water percolates into soils that can absorb water (aquifers) but there are some soils such as clay that can't absorb water (aquicludes or aquitards).  In this dramatic example (see video), the water is not absorbed by the resistant rock, flows through a sinkhole to recharge the aquifer below.    

 

Tags: physical, geomorphologywater, erosion.

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Meander? I ‘ardly know ‘er!

Meander? I ‘ardly know ‘er! | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Seth Dixon's insight:

This is brilliant.  I can't say how much I love this. 

 

Tagsphysical, fluvial, geomorphology, landscape, funart.

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YEC Geo's curator insight, April 28, 2016 9:08 AM
Love geomorphology comics.
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Tsunami Animation

"The largest earthquake ever recorded by instruments struck southern Chile on May 22, 1960. This 9.5 magnitude earthquake generated a tsunami that crossed the Pacific Ocean, killing as many as 2000 people in Chile and Peru, 61 people in Hilo, Hawaii, and 142 people in Japan as well as causing damage in the Marquesas Islands (Fr. Polynesia), Samoa, New Zealand, Australia, the Philippines, and in Alaska's Aleutian Islands.  To see how this tsunami compares with two recent tsunamis from Chile, please watch http://youtu.be/qoxTC3vIF1U "


Tags: physical, geomorphologywater, tectonics, disasters, video.

Seth Dixon's insight:

In 1700, Japan was hit by a tsunami; they knew that tsunamis were caused by earthquakes, but there was no earthquake of that magnitude in Japan that could have caused it.  They called it the Orphan Tsunami, and it puzzled everyone.  Centuries later, data confirmed that a massive earthquake in the Pacific Northwest occurred in 1700 and it's tsunami traveled across the ocean much like the this computer simulation of the 1960 Chile earthquake.   

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Maricarmen Husson's curator insight, September 24, 2015 9:23 PM

Tsunami ocurrido en Chile el 22 de Mayo de 1960 donde murieron 2000 personas en Chile y Perú, 61 en Hilo Hawaii, 142 en Japón causando daños en Islas Marquesas Polinesia , Samoa, Nueva Zelanda, Australia, Filipinas, Alaska's Islas Aleutianas.....enlace para ver la comparación con el Tsunamis recientes en Chile (2015)

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Large Flash Flood

"A nice flood rolled down Johnson Canyon (southern Utah) on July 6th, 2015."

Seth Dixon's insight:

The raw power of Earth's natural forces can be truly amazing. 


Tags: physical, geomorphology, erosion, landforms, Utah, water, disasters.

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Floods might have doomed prehistoric American city

Floods might have doomed prehistoric American city | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Cahokia settlement's decline began in 1200, around time of major Mississippi River surge.
Seth Dixon's insight:

In a flat landscape, what represents power more than a towering mound?  My family loved our excursion to this site and it show so many geographic issues. 


Tagsfluvial, geomorphology, erosion, landscape, environment depend, environment adapthistorical.

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Tide Makes Tombolo an Island

Tide Makes Tombolo an Island | Geography Education | Scoop.it
The historic abbey of Mont Saint-Michel became an island on March 21 after a rare “supertide” flooded a causeway.
Seth Dixon's insight:

Coastal physical geography produces some beautiful landforms such as tombolos.  A tombolo is created when sand deposits attach an island to a larger piece of land--think of it as special type of isthmus.  Mont St. Michel (picture above) is the world’s most famous example because of the iconic walled city with crowned with a striking medieval abbey.  As the tides fluctuated, the city and abbey were alternately connected or disconnected from the mainland.  However, a ‘super-tide’ that occurs once every 18.6 years wiped out the artificial causeway stranding motorists on France's most visited tourist destination (I wouldn't mind be stranded there right about now).  


Tags: water, physical, coastal, geomorphology, landformsFrance, tourism.

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West Sound Tech Assn's curator insight, March 25, 2015 8:32 PM

Not techy but very cool!

Jacob McCullough's curator insight, May 26, 2015 5:24 PM

this was interesting mother nature shows us once again that she is in control by showing us how easily our seemingly strong structures can be swept away    

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Imagining Continental Drift

"This animated documentary tells the story of polar explorer Alfred Wegener, the unlikely scientist behind continental drift theory."

Seth Dixon's insight:

While plate tectonics is now universally accepted, when Alfred Wegener first proposed continental drift it was it was greeted with a great deal of skepticism from the academic community.  This video nicely shows how scientific advancement requires exploration and imagination, and whole lot of heart.   


Tagstectonicsphysicalgeomorphology, K12STEM, video.

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Dramatic Confluences

Dramatic Confluences | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"Confluences occur wherever two streams come together. If the gradient is low (i.e., nearly level) and the properties of the two streams are very different, the confluences may be characterized by a dramatic visible distinction as the mixing occurs only slowly."


Tagsphysical, fluvial, geomorphology, erosion, landscape.

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Sylvain Rotillon's curator insight, January 7, 2015 5:47 AM

Wonderful pictures of rivers confluences

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Why Do Rivers Curve?

Seth Dixon's insight:

While this Minute Earth video might make geomorphology experts cringe at some of the vocabulary in this, it still is a good introduction to the absolute basics of fluvial geomorphology, or how and why rivers reshape the Earth.   Fun fact: Albert Einstein pondered some of the great mysteries of the Earth, and in 1926 wrote an article on this very subject (actual paper can be read here).  


Tagsphysical, fluvial, geomorphology, erosion, landscape.


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YEC Geo's curator insight, December 7, 2014 8:15 PM

Actually a very good video.  My one quibble is with the introduction, when the narrator talks about mountain streams "carving" their gorges.  The puzzle of how small streams could possibly carve out deep bedrock canyons is an ongoing research problem, and is difficult to resolve from a gradualistic perspective.

Jason Schneider's curator insight, January 27, 2015 12:15 AM

So pretty much, the water controls rivers rather than particles controlling the river. Also, it appears that the motion and strength of the water causes rivers to bend and form in different curves. I'd like to think of it as a ball bouncing from side to side and every time it touches the border land of a river, it expands to the opposite side. However, when the water flow is hitting the side of a river, the opposite side is not getting any force from the water flow. In that case, the side that is not getting hit by the water flow slowly moves to the side that is being by the water flow causing river curves.

Lorraine Chaffer's curator insight, June 1, 2015 2:07 AM

Australian curriculum


The geomorphic processes that produce landforms, including a case study of at least one landform (ACHGK050)


GeoWorld

Chapter 1: Distinctive landform features

Chapter 3: Restless Earth: geomorphic processes 

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Skokomish River salmon cross the road

"Watch salmon race across the road on their way to spawn; for more footage, watch this extended version."

Seth Dixon's insight:

We often see examples of how human modifications to ecosystems or watersheds have devastatingly negative impacts.  This is a remarkable example from Washington's Olympic Peninsula that shows the resiliency of natural systems to overcome human modifications to the physical landscape.  If you study the world, you will always have something to both amaze and surprise you.   

 

Tagsfluvial, biogeography, environment, geomorphology, physicalwater, environment adapt, environment modify.

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Lorraine Chaffer's curator insight, December 17, 2016 11:45 PM

Sometimes the natural world finds ways to adapt to human environmental changes. 

Useful when studying inland water / rivers for the option study. 

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Iceland's Glacial Melt and Geothermal Activity

Iceland's Glacial Melt and Geothermal Activity | Geography Education | Scoop.it

Glacial melting and flooding occurs every year by the Skafta River in Iceland. As the water travels down towards the North Atlantic Ocean, incredible patterns are created on the hillsides. Rising lava, steam vents, or newly opened hot springs can all cause this rapid ice melt, leading to a sizable release of water that picks up sediment as it flows down from the glaciers.

 

Tags: geomorphology, physical, Europe, fluvial, water, landforms, images.

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A Medieval Abbey Trapped by Tides and Time

"Mont Saint-Michel emerges from the tides in Normandy, France, like an ancient village from a fairytale. The coastal town built on a massive granite rock cuts a dramatic silhouette against the sky, rising from disappearing marshes to a Gothic Abbey at its height. With a permanent population of around 50, this popular tourist destination has a history dating back to at least the Roman era. Fancy a tour before the tides roll in?"

Seth Dixon's insight:

Coastal physical geography produces some beautiful landforms such as tombolos.  A tombolo is created when sand deposits attach an island to a larger piece of land--think of it as special type of isthmus.  Mont St. Michel is the world’s most famous example because of the iconic walled city with crowned with a striking medieval abbey.  This is one of those fascinating places for both the human and physical geographer.   

 

Tags: water, physical, coastal, geomorphology, landformsFrance, historical, tourism.

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Lauren Wilson's comment, November 8, 2016 1:53 PM
This is a great addition to our lessons regarding erosion of cliffsides, in that it represents structures in place of an ever-evolving coastal environment. That such a feature can remain relatively unchanged by time and tides is a fascinating foothold in this study.
ROCAFORT's curator insight, November 18, 2016 3:06 AM
A Medieval Abbey Trapped by Tides and Time
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The Tidal Waves of the Qiantang River

The Tidal Waves of the Qiantang River | Geography Education | Scoop.it
For hundreds of years, on the eighth month of the lunar calendar, people have gathered along the shores of China’s Qiantang River at the head of Hangzhou Bay to witness the waves of its famous bore tide. Higher-than-normal high tides push into the harbor, funneling into the river, causing a broad wave that can reach up to 30 feet high. If the waves surge over the banks, spectators can be swept up, pushed along walkways or down embankments. Below, I’ve gathered images from the past few years of the Qiantang bore tides.
Seth Dixon's insight:

This is an amazing set of images, where a cultural phenomenon is wrapped up in observing the pulsating physical geography of the river.  Usually the tidal bore is impressive (but not dangerous--see video here), but occasionally it can be incredibly violent (see this 2015 video).   

 

Tags: physical, geomorphologywaterChina.

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Kiran's comment, September 24, 2016 8:33 AM
http://onlinemoviesvideos.com/
Lorraine Chaffer's curator insight, September 28, 2016 8:56 PM

Tital bores - the values of water 

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Death Valley's Roving Rocks

Death Valley,California - Giant boulders in the desert look as though their moving all on their own! But could weird weather be behind these roving rocks
Seth Dixon's insight:

Since the video above was created, the mystery has been solved.  On very rare occasions, when it rains in the region, water will accumulate in the playa (discovermagazine.com).  If the wind is powerful and consistent enough, the wind will push the panels of ice against these rocks and over time, the ice floes will push these rocks, leaving behind distinctive trails (latimes.com). This perfect combination of water, wind, ice and heat creates a remarkable signature on the landscape (livescience.com).  The video in this article (weather.com) nicely explains how the non-aerodynamic rocks of Death Valley's Racetrack Playa move, leaving behind their trail in the hot desert.  Numerous attempts using GPS receivers (NatGeo.com) and good ol' fashioned observations have been made, but observing ice in Death Valley is so rare that no one had ever seen it until now (phys.org).  

 

Tags: physical, geomorphology, landforms, desertlandscape.

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Lorraine Chaffer's curator insight, September 8, 2016 12:06 AM

Engage students in this topic with this mysterious event as a way to introduce geomorphic processes 

 

Ask inquiry questions related to geomorphic processes eg how do plants and animals cause weathering.

 

Use images as a basis for inquiry and discussion 

 

Syllabus links

 

Students investigate different landscapes and the geomorphic processes that create distinctive landforms, for example: 

- explanation of geomorphic processes that create landforms eg weathering, erosion, deposition, tectonic activity

- examination of ONE landscape and its distinctive landforms 

 

Geoworld 7 NSW

Chapter 2 Restless Earth: Geomorphic processes

2.1 Geomorphic processes

2.2 Plate tectonics

2.3 Wrinkles & breaks :flying and faulting

2.4 Hot and violent:volcanism

2.6 Getting older :weathering away (biotic weathering)

2.7 Weathering changes landforms 

2.8 Rocks and sliding (page 70-71

2.9 Water and wind erosion

2.10 Transportation and deposition

 

Suggested by Thomas Schmeling
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The memory of a river

The memory of a river | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"If you measure the contours of a river valley with Lidar (like radar with lasers), you get a beautiful map of all the historical river channels."

Seth Dixon's insight:

This particular image is fantastic for teaching about geomorphology and river systems.  Students can 'see' the historical layers of a meandering stream winding it's way across the landscape.  Here's a meandering stream image (Willamette River, Oregon) that shows the dynamism of fluvial processes quite nicely.

 

Tags physical, fluvial, geomorphology, erosion, landscape.

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YEC Geo's curator insight, January 19, 2016 4:58 PM

Very impressive.

Sylvain Rotillon's curator insight, January 29, 2016 3:42 AM

For the beauty of this picture. Follow the link to see the ancient courses of Mississippi River, I had once the idea to draw maps of the lower course of the Loue River in France not in a scientific purpose, but just for a kind of fractal art.

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Lakes On A Glacier

"How deep is that icy blue water on Greenland's ice sheet? Dr. Allen Pope, of the National Snow and Ice Data Center, is using data from the NASA/USGS Landsat 8 satellite to find out. In this video, Dr. Pope shares what he sees when he looks at a Landsat image of the Greenland ice sheet just south of the Jakobshavn Glacier.

Because the lakes are darker than the ice around them, they absorb more energy from the sun. A little bit of melt concentrates in one place, and then melts more, establishing a feedback mechanism accelerating the growth of the lake. When the lakes get big enough they can force open fractures that then drill all the way down to the bed of the glacier, transporting this water to the base where it can temporarily speed up the flow of the ice."


Tags: physical, geomorphology, landforms, erosion, climate change, Greenland, remote sensing, geospatial.

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Courtney Barrowman's curator insight, September 8, 2015 1:06 PM

unit 1 and summer read

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Sinkholes: Can we forecast a catastrophic collapse?

Sinkholes: Can we forecast a catastrophic collapse? | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Sometimes the ground suddenly opens, consuming cars, homes and people. We may have a way to see these sinkholes coming – so why would anyone resist the idea?
Seth Dixon's insight:

Via the American Geographical Society: "Sinkholes - formed where groundwater dissolves soluble bedrock to form underground cavities. Sometimes, when the ceiling of a cavity can no longer support the weight of the overlying sediments, it can suddenly collapse, with catastrophic results."


Tags physical, disasters, geomorphology, erosion, landforms.

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Earth's tectonic plates skitter about

Earth's tectonic plates skitter about | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"Geoscientists have unveiled a computer model that maps the details of that tectonic dance in 1-million-year increments—practically a frame-by-frame recap of geologic time. It shows that the plates speed up, slow down, and move around in unexpectedly short bursts of activity. It also suggests that researchers may have to rethink what drives much of that incessant motion.  The new model shows that although plates usually creep along at an average speed of about 4 centimeters per year, some can reach much faster speeds in short sprints. For example, India, which broke off the east coast of Africa about 120 million years and is now plowing into Asia, reached speeds as high as 20 centimeters per year for a relatively brief 10 million years."


Tagstectonicsphysicalgeomorphology, video.

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Maricarmen Husson's curator insight, April 27, 2015 5:52 PM

"Los geocientíficos han dado a conocer un modelo de computadora que asigna los detalles de esa danza tectónico en 1 millón de años incrementos de una recapitulación fotograma a fotograma de tiempo geológico. Esto demuestra que las placas aceleran, frenan, y se mueven alrededor de pequeños estallidos de actividad. también sugiere que los investigadores pueden tener que repensar lo que impulsa gran parte de ese movimiento incesante. El nuevo modelo muestra que, aunque por lo general se arrastran a lo largo de las placas a una velocidad media de unos 4 centímetros por año, algunos pueden alcanzar velocidades mucho más rápidas en carreras cortas. Por ejemplo, la India, que estalló frente a la costa oriental de África a unos 120 millones de años y ahora está arando en Asia, alcanza velocidades de hasta 20 centímetros por año durante un tiempo relativamente breves 10 millones años ".

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Augmented Reality Sandbox

"Realtime topographic contour line generation."

Seth Dixon's insight:

Many of our first experiments of creating landforms and designing a new world started in the sandbox (you can only image what I do at the beach).  This video shows how that early childhood activity can make for an excellent classroom demonstration to shows how Earth's physical systems work.  If you don't happen to have a digital topographic map to superimpose on the sandbox and a GPU-based water simulation, then at least you've got this video.  Click here to learn more about this UC Davis project on the visualization of lake ecosystems.


Tags: water, physical, geomorphology, landforms, visualization.

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Bobbi Dunham's curator insight, March 8, 2015 10:08 AM

Well, that is just incredible. Now THAT'S a sandbox! Augmented Reality is going to be a major gamechanger.

Lorraine Chaffer's curator insight, April 5, 2015 9:20 PM

Every Geography classroom needs one of these to explain topography

Paul Farias's curator insight, April 9, 2015 12:24 PM

This thing is sick! I would love to make one of these i would play with this thing for hours and I'm an adult. And they say video games are useless, the kinect can be used for things other than dance offs and such. 

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Simulation of the Oso Landslide

Simulation of the Oso Landslide | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"The large landslide that occurred in March near Oso, Washington was unusually mobile and destructive."

Seth Dixon's insight:

There are several reasons for landslides--some are purely a result of physical geography and others are related to land use patterns.  The landslide in Washington state last year was a combination of the two (see on map) and it is a good teaching moment to discuss the environmental impacts of land use patterns and resource extraction projects.  As seen in this interactive, the river was cutting at the base of the hill, while loggers were clear-cutting at the top of the mountain.  Trees help prevent erosion as the roots hold the soil in place--a critical piece to the puzzle in a very rainy climate.  With $1 million worth of timber on the slope, logging companies persisted despite objections from the Department of Natural Resources and some restrictions (but in hindsight, those restrictions clearly were not enough).  Watch a simulation of the landslide here.  

View the impact in ArcGIS online: Before and After Swipe, LiDAR I and II, and Imagery.


Questions to Consider: Other than economic worth, what other ways are there to value and evaluate the environment?  How could this landscape have been protected and managed better or was this landslide inevitable?   


Tagspolitical ecology, resources, environment, environment modify, industry, physical, geomorphology, erosion, landforms.

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Kristin Mandsager San Bento's curator insight, January 27, 2015 4:50 PM

This seems like a useful tool to a degree.  But if we could actually simulate every destructive event then we would be miracle workers.  This was a sad event.  We have left such an imprint on the earth that it's starting to fight back.  We need to be more aware and careful with the one planet we have.  Climate changes are in the news more and more.  We can't ignore climate changes anymore.  

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Town Slowly deformed by Plate Tectonics

Town Slowly deformed by Plate Tectonics | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"The signs that something’s wrong are not immediately obvious, but, once you see them, it’s hard to tune them out. Curbs at nearly the exact same spot on opposite sides of the street are popped out of alignment. Houses too young to show this kind of wear stand oddly warped, torqued out of sync with their own foundations, their once-strong frames off-kilter. This is Hollister, California, a town being broken in two slowly, relentlessly, and in real time by an effect known as 'fault creep.' A slow, surreal tide of deformation has appeared throughout the city."


Tags: disasters, geomorphologyCalifornia, physical.

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