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Supporting geography educators everywhere with current digital resources.
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Peak Oil: The End of the Oil Age

Peak Oil: The End of the Oil Age | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"It has taken between 50-300 million years to form, and yet we have managed to burn roughly half of all global oil reserves in merely 125 years or so."

Seth Dixon's insight:

Many who research natural resources and their production believe in peak oil.  Peak oil is defined as the maximum rate of the production of oil in any area under consideration, recognizing that it is a finite natural resource, subject to depletion.  In essence, oil will run out some day because it is a non-renewable resources; so oil production will peak, and then permanently decline.  Some are skeptical of these claims and feel that the oil industry is in a much stronger position than peak oil proponents suggest.


Tagsenergy, resources, environment, environment modifyclimate change, political ecology.

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Nevermore Sithole's curator insight, October 14, 2014 4:28 AM

Peak Oil: The End of the Oil Age

Jacob Crowell's curator insight, October 27, 2014 11:40 AM

Resources shape the behavior of people living in a given geographical region. On Earth, the abundance and efficiency of oil has caused our societies to be built and operated with the use of oil. Human's needed fuel and found oil to be a natural resource that could fit their needs. But all good things must come to an end. Even though oil and gas are cheap and efficient ways of fueling our society, there are disastrous consequences like environmental degregation and over dependence on foreign oil that leads countries to be entangled in conflict that cost lives everyday. Now that we have the analytically tools to project when oil will run out it allows people to reevaluate their use of oil and gas and weigh the cost of using a resources that will eventually run out and leave the earth in ecological distress. The global oil reserves have been cut in half in just 125 years, although this use of oil led to many technological and medical advances that propelled society into an age of advancement unprecedented it is time to pull back the reigns and calibrate our expectations on how much oil and gas we should keep using.

Molly McComb's curator insight, May 27, 2015 11:11 AM

Talking how the global oil and gas output has decreased and how it will decrease in the future with the creation and use of other forms of energy. 

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World’s Largest Dam Removal Unleashes U.S. River After Century of Electric Production

World’s Largest Dam Removal Unleashes U.S. River After Century of Electric Production | Geography Education | Scoop.it
The last section of dam is being blasted from the Elwha River on Washington's Olympic Peninsula on Tuesday.


For almost half a century, the two dams were widely applauded for powering the growth of the peninsula and its primary industry. But the dams blocked salmon migration up the Elwha, devastating its fish and shellfish—and the livelihood of the Lower Elwha Klallam tribe. As the tribe slowly gained political power—it won federal recognition in 1968—it and other tribes began to protest the loss of the fishing rights promised to them by federal treaty in the mid-1800s. In 1979, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that Washington tribes, including the Elwha Klallam, were entitled to half the salmon catch in the state.

Seth Dixon's insight:

See also this video to see the rapid changes on the nearby White Salmon River when they removed the dam. 


Tags: biogeography, environment, land use, sustainability, environment adapt.

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Welcome to the Anthropocene

"A 3-minute journey through the last 250 years of our history, from the start of the Industrial Revolution to the Rio+20 Summit. The film charts the growth of humanity into a global force on the equivalent scale to major geological processes."

Seth Dixon's insight:

Many geologists and other scientists now recognize that we are in a new geologic era.  This new era, called the Anthropocene, is distinguished by the fact that one species (homo sapiens), is dramatically modifying the environment. These modifications are impacting geologic processes to such a degree that this time period is geologically distinct (see this remote sensing interactive for examples of environmental change).  Paul Crutzen, a Nobel Prize–winning scientist who champions the term Anthropocene declared, “It’s no longer us against ‘Nature.’ Instead, it’s we who decide what nature is and what it will be.”  This video is a great primer for discussing the nature and extent of human and environmental interactions as related to industrialization, globalization and climate change.  This is definitely one of my favorite resources.


Tags: Anthropocenedevelopment, industryland use, environment, environment modify.  

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Javier Antonio Bellina's curator insight, September 24, 2014 11:55 AM

El Antropoceno,  nueva era geológica

Courtney Barrowman's curator insight, May 21, 2015 11:33 AM

Summer reading KQ1: How has the Earth's environment changed over time?

Alex Smiga's curator insight, March 14, 7:44 PM

Many geologists and other scientists now recognize that we are in a new geologic era.  This new era, called the Anthropocene, is distinguished by the fact that one species (homo sapiens), is dramatically modifying the environment. These modifications are impacting geologic processes to such a degree that this time period is geologically distinct (see this remote sensing interactive for examples of environmental change).  Paul Crutzen, a Nobel Prize–winning scientist who champions the term Anthropocene declared, “It’s no longer us against ‘Nature.’ Instead, it’s we who decide what nature is and what it will be.”  This video is a great primer for discussing the nature and extent of human and environmental interactions as related to industrialization, globalization and climate change.  This is definitely one of my favorite resources. 

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Where China and Kazakhstan Meet

Where China and Kazakhstan Meet | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"While people often say that borders aren’t visible from space, the line between Kazakhstan and China could not be more clear in this satellite image. Acquired by the Landsat 8 satellite on September 9, 2013, the image shows northwestern China around the city of Qoqek and far eastern Kazakhstan near Lake Balqash.

The border between the two countries is defined by land-use policies. In China, land use is intense. Only 11.62 percent of China’s land is arable. Pressed by a need to produce food for 1.3 billion people, China farms just about any land that can be sustained for agriculture. Fields are dark green in contrast to the surrounding arid landscape, a sign that the agriculture is irrigated. As of 2006, about 65 percent of China’s fresh water was used for agriculture, irrigating 629,000 square kilometers (243,000 square miles) of farmland, an area slightly smaller than the state of Texas.

The story is quite different in Kazakhstan. Here, large industrial-sized farms dominate, an artifact of Soviet-era agriculture. While agriculture is an important sector in the Kazakh economy, eastern Kazakhstan is a minor growing area. Only 0.03 percent of Kazakhstan’s land is devoted to permanent agriculture, with 20,660 square kilometers being irrigated. The land along the Chinese border is minimally used, though rectangular shapes show that farming does occur in the region. Much of the agriculture in this region is rain-fed, so the fields are tan much like the surrounding natural landscape."


Tags: remote sensing, land use, environment, geospatial, environment modify, food, agriculture, agricultural land change.

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Felix Ramos Jr.'s curator insight, April 15, 2015 10:24 AM

It is amazing what irrigation can produce.  The border between China and Kazakhstan is a perfect picture of land with irrigation and one without supplied water.  Eastern Kasakhstan has farmland but it is only subsidized by natural rainfall whereas on the greener Chinese side of the border it is supplemented with water by the farmers.  Great picture!

Kevin Cournoyer's curator insight, May 6, 2015 12:00 PM

Seeing such a striking difference between two countries that are so close together is strange and thought-provoking. Knowing a little bit about the two countries can make a world of difference, though. In this case, we have China and Kazakhstan, two countries located in East/Central Asia. Kazakhstan borders China to the west, along the northern part of its western border. Much of China's inland land use is devoted to agriculture, as the majority of its industry is located near its coast. This is evident by the amount of green space seen in the satellite image above. With well over a billion people to feed, China needs to make use of as much of its arable land as possible. Kazakhstan, on the other hand is a much smaller country with much less land devoted to agriculture. Its farmland is mostly large and industrial, as a result of Soviet-era farming and is rain-fed rather than irrigated, like China's.

 

Knowing the history as well as the economic strengths of a country can therefore be useful in interpreting satellite images such as the one in this article. A lack of knowledge about China and Kazakhstan's economy and history may lead to an assumption that the Chinese are just better farmers than the Kazakhs. This is of course not necessarily true, but what is true is that China has a much larger and more immediate need for agriculture than does Kazakhstan and so devotes more of its land, time, and energy to farming. Likewise, it shouldn't be assumed that Kazakhstan has no need for agriculture at all. Instead, its history has largely influenced its economic strengths and needs, and the result is a country that looks very different from China. 

Chris Costa's curator insight, October 19, 2015 12:41 PM

It's crazy to see how much human influences can reshape the landscape, or how things we tend to think of in more abstract terms- like national boundaries- can be very physical in nature. I liked reading about the differing agricultural approaches the two nations take, and being able to see the physical manifestations of those two different approaches so obviously. It's impressive to think that China is able to support such a massive population- one in every 5 people alive on the planet is Chinese- with so little land, and the consequences are plain to see in the image above. Increased irrigation efforts leads to the unnaturally bright green patches in the middle of a relatively dry area, serving as a symbol of man's attempts to bind mother nature to his will. Although not always successful, such attempts appear to be working well here. In contrast, Kazakhstan's population demands vary wildly from that of China's, and its solution for feeding its people can therefore take a more natural, backroads approach, with food production concentrated in a few areas. I wonder what other international borders can be seen so neatly with the naked eye.

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Mapping the Spread of Drought Across the U.S.

Mapping the Spread of Drought Across the U.S. | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Maps and charts updated weekly show the latest extent of the drought in the United States.
Seth Dixon's insight:

I've shared numerous links here about the drought situation in California over the past few months, but the situation extends far beyond California as these animated maps and charts demonstrate. Some of the best public data on drought can be found at the National Drought Mitigation Center


Tags: wateragriculture, environmentresources, environment depend, physical, weather and climate, consumptionCalifornia.

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Nancy Watson's curator insight, August 24, 2014 8:00 PM

Whether global warming or just one of the heat and cooling cycles, this drought is extensive and making an impact on food prices.

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Artful, Aerial Views of Humanity's Impact

Artful, Aerial Views of Humanity's Impact | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Using aerial photographs that render imperiled landscapes almost abstract, Edward Burtynsky explores the consequences of human activity bearing down on the earth’s resources.
Seth Dixon's insight:

This set of over a dozen images highlight the extent that humanity has modified the physical landscape.  These thoughtfully selected images are excellent 'teaching images' with a wide range of classroom applications.


Tags: remote sensing, geospatialenvironment modify, images, perspective.

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Diane Johnson's curator insight, August 11, 2014 8:12 AM

These images may be very useful for teaching the DCI's under the Human Impact topic.

Alexandra Piggott's curator insight, August 11, 2014 6:48 PM

Is this evidence of homgeniziation of landscapes?

Lorraine Chaffer's curator insight, August 11, 2014 8:11 PM

People change landscapes. This is a great resource available as an iPad App also Called Burtynsky Water. 

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Donut Holes in Law of the Sea

Donut Holes in Law of the Sea | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"Sovereignty over land defines nation states since 1648. In contrast, sovereign right over the sea was formalised only in 1982. While land borders are well-known, sea borders escape the limelight."

Seth Dixon's insight:

These maritime borders mark the economic area is defined by its Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ), a 200-nautical mile-wide (370 km) strip of sea along the country’s national coast line.  This regulation, which was installed by the ‘UN Convention on the Law of the Sea’ in 1982, grants a state special rights to exploit natural (such as oil) and marine (for instance fish) resources, including scientific research and energy production (wind-parks, for example).  This interactive map of the EEZs also shows the 'donut holes,' or the seas that are no state can claim that no state can claim.  Given the number of conflicts that are occurring--especially in East Asia--this map becomes a very valuable online resource for teaching political geography. 


Questions to ponder: how does this series of buffer zones around the Earth's land masses impact politics, the environment and local economies?  Where might the EEZs be more important to the success of a country/territory than other regions? 


Tagseconomic, environment, political, resources, water, sovereignty, coastal, environment depend, territoriality, states, conflict, unit 4 political.

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Lorraine Chaffer's curator insight, July 29, 2014 5:48 PM

Option topic Marine  Environments and management

MsPerry's curator insight, August 12, 2014 6:52 PM

APHG-U4

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The Last Drop: America's Breadbasket Faces Dire Water Crisis

The Last Drop: America's Breadbasket Faces Dire Water Crisis | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Editor's note: This story is one in a series on a crisis in America's Breadbasket –the depletion of the Ogallala Aquifer and its effects on a region that hel...
Seth Dixon's insight:

This isn't new, but it is a new development that the media is covering the issue that has been going on for decades.  The Ogallala aquifer is the primary water source in an agricultural region  from Texas to Nebraska in dry, but agriculturally productive states.  The reason behind their agricultural success in the dry high plains is that more water is being extracted from the aquifer than is naturally being replenished.  This is the obvious result of a human-environmental interaction where the individual actors are incentivized to deplete a communal resource.      


Tags: agriculture, agribusinesswater, environment, resources

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Linda Denty's curator insight, July 24, 2014 6:46 PM

Could this happen in Australia also?

Jamie Strickland's curator insight, July 25, 2014 10:46 AM

Thanks to my good friend, Seth Dixon for the original scoop.  There had been quite a bit of news reporting on the drought in central California this year, but this midwestern region has been experiencing water stress for years with little national attention.  I plan to use this article in both an upcoming presentation as well as an example when I teach "Tragedy of the Commons" in my Environmental Dilemma class.

Kate Buckland's curator insight, July 26, 2014 10:32 PM

Good to compare to how we use water resources in Australia

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Drought Drains Lake Mead to Lowest Level

Drought Drains Lake Mead to Lowest Level | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"The largest reservoir in the U.S. falls to its lowest water level in history, Nevada State Sen. Tick Segerblom introduced a bill title and issued a press release on July 8 calling for an 'independent scientific and economic audit of the Bureau of Reclamation’s strategies for Colorado River management.'"


This week’s history-making, bad-news event at Lake Mead has already triggered lots of news stories, but almost all of these stories focus on the water supply for Las Vegas, Phoenix and California. But what about the health of the river itself?


Tags: physicalfluvial, drought, water, environment.

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Lorraine Chaffer's curator insight, July 12, 2014 3:09 AM

Consequences of urbanisation 

Lorraine Chaffer's curator insight, July 12, 2014 3:10 AM

Option topic : Inland water and management

Tom Franta's curator insight, July 12, 2014 11:40 AM

Many geographers are aware that future water resource issues in the American Southwest will have political, cultural, and social impacts.  What do you believe to be some approaching concerns after reading this article?

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This 19th Century Map Could Have Transformed the West

This 19th Century Map Could Have Transformed the West | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Today's drought-riven west would look very different if Congress had listened to John Wesley Powell
Seth Dixon's insight:

Author of Mapping the Nation, Susan Schulten explains how western expansion failed to recognize the basic physical geographic reality of the United States--that the west is much drier than the east.  Given that much of the west, especially California, is in the midst of a severe drought, this article serves as a reminder to recognize that localized understandings of human and environmental actions are necessary.  Do you know what watershed you live in?  How does and should that impact us?   


Tags: physical, historical, California, water, environment.

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Sylvain Rotillon's curator insight, July 1, 2014 8:11 AM

We are very proud in France thinking we created the watershed approach with the 1964' water law, present basis for EU's water framework directive. Now, I would say that John W Powell is the true creator of watershed management. It's a blow to French pride...

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Where Will The World's Water Conflicts Erupt?

Where Will The World's Water Conflicts Erupt? | Geography Education | Scoop.it

As the climate shifts, rivers will both flood and dry up more often, according to the latest report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Shortages are especially likely in parts of the world already strapped for water, so political scientists expect feuds will become even more intense. To track disputes worldwide, researchers at Oregon State University spent a decade building a comprehensive database of international exchanges—-both conflicts and alliances—over shared water resources. They found that countries often begin disputes belligerently but ultimately reach peaceful agreements. Says Aaron Wolf, the geographer who leads the project, “For me the really interesting part is how even Arabs and Israelis, Indians and Pakistanis, are able to resolve their differences and find a solution.”

Seth Dixon's insight:

Too often we think of political conflicts within the framework of state borders; this mapping project divides the world into watersheds and forces us to look at global politics through a different and enlightening lens (Hi-Res image).  Oil might be the most economically valuable liquid resource, but water is the most critical for human habitation.  This infographic is reminiscent of this one, asking where the next 'water wars' might take place...Foreign Policy says Central Asia.     


Tags: water, political, unit 4 political environment, conflict, infographic

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Adilson Camacho's curator insight, June 20, 2014 2:50 PM

Questões políticas... 

J. Mark Schwanz's curator insight, June 21, 2014 11:01 AM

Add water to geography education curriculum? You better believe it. The crisis of the 21st century is and will be water.  

Courtney Barrowman's curator insight, May 21, 2015 11:36 AM

summer reading KQ2: How have humans altered the Earth's environment?  Water Security

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EnviroAtlas

EnviroAtlas | Geography Education | Scoop.it

EnviroAtlas is a collection of interactive tools and resources that allows users to explore the many benefits people receive from nature, often referred to as ecosystem services. Key components of EnviroAtlas include the following:

Seth Dixon's insight:

This video is a brief introduction on how to utilize the EnviroAtlas mapping platform that has been created by the United States Environmental Protection Agency.  This has great potential for the classroom and as a portal for students to explore the data on their own.      


Tags: mapping, environment, physical.

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steve smith's curator insight, May 23, 2014 3:59 PM

This looks great, will be having a play with this soon !

Mirta Liliana Filgueira's curator insight, May 24, 2014 3:38 PM

Enviro Atlas. Mapa Interactivo.

Allan Tsuda's curator insight, May 25, 2014 9:21 PM

Unbelievable, tremendous resource. I wish I had this one growing up. It is a US gov site (EPA), and is for US geography. I'm betting you can search around for similar sites for other locales around the world. Great demo. Demo runs on Adobe Captivate. The demo took a little bit of time to load on a wired connection through a high speed fiber optic connection. Or skip the demo and play around with the maps. Site not all that fast. Still, it's worth waiting for if you want the data.

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The Habitable Planet

The Habitable Planet | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"The Habitable Planet is a multimedia course for high school teachers and adult learners interested in studying environmental science. The Web site provides access to course content and activities developed by leading scientists and researchers in the field."

Seth Dixon's insight:

Much like the Power of Place resources were created by Annenberg Learner to share World Regional Geography videos, the Habitable Planet has diverse resources for Physical Geography and Environmental Science.  In essence, it is an excellent free online textbook.   


Tags: textbook, environment, physical.

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dilaycock's curator insight, May 15, 2014 8:32 PM

This looks like a great site. I'm always impressed with the resources that come out of Annenberg. Many thanks to Seth Dixon for this Scoop.

Julie Wicks's curator insight, May 22, 2014 8:10 PM

Unit 5 and 8 are resources for AC Geography year 7 units.

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Where Has All the Water Gone?

Where Has All the Water Gone? | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"Once the fourth-largest lake in the world, Central Asia's shrinking Aral Sea has reached a new low, thanks to decades-old water diversions and a more recent drought." 

Seth Dixon's insight:

I have posted many times in the past about the Aral Sea, but this recent event has been the most dramatic update in years.  The Eastern portion of the lake has been receding for decades, but it is now officially gone.  This fantastic set of satellite images of the region painfully chronicles the decline of the Aral Sea as irrigation in the region diverted all the sources of the lake.   


Tags: environment, Central Asia, environment modify.

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Nicholas A. Whitmore's curator insight, December 13, 2015 3:52 PM

An unfortunate side affect of unregulated growth and mismanagement. This turn of events has led to many losing their livelihoods and more than likely has led to the abandoning of at least some villages/towns that may have depended on the Sea. Another great tragedy of all this is the damage to the wildlife in the region. Who knows the kinds of species that were lost. It is a sad day when a landmark disappears and for the Aral Sea it would appear it will become nothing more than a historical memory like the Rubicon. I at least hope something will be done to restore it by finding another place for the cotton production but given this is a dispute involving multiple countries it is unlikely to happen at least in the short term.

Benjamin Jackson's curator insight, December 14, 2015 11:21 AM

this is a demonstration of why you shouldn't just try to alter the environment that you are relying on for  your entire existence in a way that will have effects that you cannot possibly predict.

Adam Deneault's curator insight, December 14, 2015 3:22 PM

The Aral Sea, a once very large sea, is becoming a dried up sea bed. Human irrigation has played an important roll in the decline of the sea. Irrigation created canals and damns that led to the the peoples crops. Since the 1960's when irrigation was started the sea has dried up creating very large beds of salty sand. This sand was not just located around the sea but dust storms pick up the sea and deposit it on the land around the sea creating very large swaths of land that are infertile. This also creates health problems from the salt settling on the crops of the people. 

The dried up sea also creates a environmental issue of less evaporation and less rain for the crops. This also breaks down the ecological system. a area that was once booming with wildlife has been diminished to just 32 species down from the 174 it used to be. what this area needs is a enormous rainstorm or a massive ice melt that hopefully be enough to re establish the sea. This is more then likely not going to happen but its what it needs.

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Natural gas leaking from faulty wells, not fracked shale

Natural gas leaking from faulty wells, not fracked shale | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"A new study adds to growing evidence that the risk of fracking contaminating drinking water wells is to due to problems with the lining of the gas wells, not the high-pressure fracturing of deep shale to release natural gas. In a new study, scientists examined isotopes of helium and two other noble gases to identify the source of methane found in drinking water wells in the Marcellus Shale of Pennsylvania and the Barnett Shale of Texas, areas where a lot of fracking has taken place. The pattern of isotopes suggested that the stray gas had leaked out of the well casing near the surface, rather than escaping from the fracked deep shale, according to a story in The Dallas Morning News. The findings will be published online this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences."


Tagsenergypollution, resources, environment, environment modify, ecology.

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YEC Geo's curator insight, September 30, 2014 8:43 AM

Interesting to see if this is a one-off, or if other researchers can duplicate the work elsewhere.  It will also be interesting to see what the reaction will be from those opposed to fracking.

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Louisiana Loses Its Boot

Louisiana Loses Its Boot | Geography Education | Scoop.it
The boot-shaped state isn’t shaped like that anymore. So, we revised its iconic outline to reflect the truth about a sin…
Seth Dixon's insight:

Maps shape how we think about places.  In mapping, we can reveal or conceal important pieces of information but sometimes the phenomena don't fit the easy binaries.  In most places there is land, a coastline and then water (simple enough), but Louisiana's coastline is much more complicated with large regions being more of a coastal zone than a neat line.  That accounts for some of the inaccuracies mapping Louisiana, but some lies are so convenient, that many people want the fiction to continue.  It is comforting to think about places as permanent, and admitting that it isn't is acknowledging that there might be a problem.  As stated in this article, "the boot is at best an inaccurate approximation of Louisiana’s true shape and, at worst, an irresponsible lie."  To explore the issue yourself, this gorgeous interactive map pulls together some high quality source materials on a wide range of issues to look at this environmental issues of this region in a holistic manner.


Tagsmappingcoastalenvironment, erosion, landscape., physical, fluvial.

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James Hobson's curator insight, September 18, 2014 10:52 AM

(North America topic 7)
Just like geography and history textbooks become obsolete the day they're published (thanks to Professors Dixon and Bonin for the phrase!), the same can be said for maps and icons.

This article uses the example of Louisiana's state highway signs, which show the outline of the state... well, according to data from the 1930s. While an updated sign isn't as pretty, it does bring about the truth that the landscape is changing, and on a larger scale this is true for the entire world, especially with influence from development and climate change.
However, I can relate to the other side of the argument too. Tossing the old LA symbol would toss a historical reminder of what once was. The same can be said for New Hampshire's Old Man of the Mountain road signs and license plates. I'd hate to see the profile removed, especially since what is symbolizes still lives on in the hearts of many residents and visitors, including myself.

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Animated GIFs of Earth Over Time

Animated GIFs of Earth Over Time | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"It took the folks at Google to upgrade these choppy visual sequences from crude flip-book quality to true video footage. With the help of massive amounts of computer muscle, they have scrubbed away cloud cover, filled in missing pixels, digitally stitched puzzle-piece pictures together, until the growing, thriving, sometimes dying planet is revealed in all its dynamic churn. The images are striking not just because of their vast sweep of geography and time but also because of their staggering detail."

Seth Dixon's insight:

This interactive feature shows time lapse satellite imagery of some selected locations that have experienced rapid environmental change in the last few decades (or you can simply watch the animated GIFs).  These images are a way to show the power of remotely sensed data as well as massive environmental impact of rapid urbanization and globalization and the feature allows students to explore these places on their own.   

Tags: remote sensing, time lapse, land use, environment, geospatial, environment modifyurban ecology.

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Sally Egan's curator insight, August 26, 2014 6:42 PM

This is a great demonstration of human impacts on ecosystems. 7 locations in the world show dramatic change over time.

MsPerry's curator insight, September 1, 2014 9:51 AM

APHG-Unit 1

Lindley Amarantos's curator insight, September 5, 2014 9:19 AM

the Impact of HEI

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Canada on mission to map Arctic, lay claim to broader boundaries

Canada on mission to map Arctic, lay claim to broader boundaries | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Canada has dispatched two icebreakers to map the Arctic seabed beneath the North Pole to support a bid to extend the country's maritime territory deeper into the waterways at the top of the world.
Seth Dixon's insight:

Canada, Russia and Denmark (Greenland) are all seeking to expand their maritime claims in the Arctic.  Globally speaking, the retreat of Arctic sea ice can be seen as a unmitigated disaster, but disasters for the many can open up new economic opportunities for the few.  When trapped under ice, extracting resources is cost prohibitive, but the melting sea ice will make the Arctic's resources all the more valuable (including the expanded shipping lanes).  This fits in with the APHG new course outline which includes political ecology (the study of the political and economic principles controlling the relations of human beings to one another and to the environment).
 

Tagseconomic, environment, political, resources, water, sovereignty, coastal, environment depend, territoriality, unit 4 political, Arctic, climate change, political ecology.

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Lorraine Chaffer's curator insight, August 18, 2014 7:19 PM

Option - marine environments and management

Kevin Barker's curator insight, August 19, 2014 8:53 AM

Canada and Russia have at least one way they will benefit from a warming climate and both are eager to see that they take advantage of it.  Using remote sensing is a way to identify and formalize where is their legitimate claim to territory and resources.  What problems might arise with the retreat of the arctic ice?

MsPerry's curator insight, August 25, 2014 3:30 PM

APHG-Unit 4

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Colombia's Herd of Hungry Hippos

Colombia's Herd of Hungry Hippos | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"A herd of hippopotamuses once owned by the late Colombian drug baron Pablo Escobar has been taking over the countryside near his former ranch - and no-one quite knows what to do with them."

Seth Dixon's insight:

An important idea in biogeography is the concept of invasive species. An invasive species is an organism that is not indigenous to an area but causes great economic or environmental harm to the new area as it quickly adapts and alters the ecosystem.   Colombia's hippopotamus herd certainly qualifies as an interesting example to share with students of unintended ecological consequences that occur through human and environmental interactions.  For further explorations into invasive species, see this National Geographic lesson plan.   

 

Tags: biogeography, environmentecology, Colombia, National Geographic.

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Lorraine Chaffer's curator insight, August 1, 2014 6:30 PM

Ecosystem imbalance

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The world's megacities that are sinking 10 times faster than water levels are rising

The world's megacities that are sinking 10 times faster than water levels are rising | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Scientists have issued a new warning to the world’s coastal megacities that the threat from subsiding land is a more immediate problem than rising sea levels caused by global warming.


A new paper from the Deltares Research Institute in the Netherlands published in April identified regions of the globe where the ground level is falling 10 times faster than water levels are rising - with human activity often to blame.

In Jakarta, Indonesia’s largest city, the population has grown from around half a million in the 1930s to just under 10 million today, with heavily populated areas dropping by as much as six and a half feet as groundwater is pumped up from the Earth to drink.

The same practice led to Tokyo’s ground level falling by two meters before new restrictions were introduced, and in Venice, this sort of extraction has only compounded the effects of natural subsidence caused by long-term geological processes.


Tagscoastalclimate change, urbanmegacitieswater, environmenturban ecology.

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Adilson Camacho's curator insight, August 2, 2014 12:32 AM

Perception!

Matt Evan Dobbie's curator insight, August 2, 2014 6:55 PM

Huge problem when combined with sea level rise

MsPerry's curator insight, August 12, 2014 6:53 PM

APHG-U7

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Yes, Yellowstone's Roads Just Melted. No, There's No Reason to Panic

Yes, Yellowstone's Roads Just Melted. No, There's No Reason to Panic | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"Last week, a major tourist thruway in Yellowstone National Park had to be shut down because the road melted. The road’s Wicked Witch of the West impression was caused by high temperatures in both the air and under the ground. Yellowstone sits atop a volcanic hotspot, and that heat helped cause the asphalt to soften and oil to well up onto the surface."


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Ethiopia's Dam Problems

Ethiopia's Dam Problems | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"Ethiopia is three years from completing a dam to control its headwaters, and while Egypt points to colonial-era treaties to claim the water and to stop the project, the question remains as to who own the Blue Nile."

Seth Dixon's insight:

This 7-minute Geography News Network podcast (written by Julie and Seth Dixon) touches on some key geographic concepts.  85% of the Nile's water comes from the Blue Nile that originates in the Ethiopian highlands--it is the Blue Nile that Ethiopia has been working on damming since 2011.  The Grand Ethiopia Renaissance Dam (GERD) will be located  near the border with Sudan.  Egypt is adamantly opposed to Ethiopia's plan and is actively lobbying the international community to stop construction on the dam, fearing their water supply with be threatened. 


Tags: Ethiopia, Africa, development. environment, water, energy, borders, political.

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Lorraine Chaffer's curator insight, July 20, 2014 8:00 PM

Option: Inland water 

dilaycock's curator insight, July 21, 2014 9:09 PM

Useful example to illustrate the interactions and tensions between natural resources and political systems.

Kate Buckland's curator insight, July 26, 2014 10:38 PM

At least the Murray-Darling Basin is within one country - even if it covers 4 states!

Suggested by Mike Busarello's Digital Storybooks
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America’s recent drought history, animated

America’s recent drought history, animated | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"California's drought just hit a new milestone: As of this week, 32.98 percent of the state is experiencing "exceptional" drought, making it the worst drought in the 14 years that the Department of Agriculture's Drought Monitor has tracked data."

Seth Dixon's insight:

The recent drought in California has only deepened and this Washington Post article shows an animated map that highlights the temporal and spatial patterns in the drought data (hint--it's not pretty).  In a related note, May 2014 was the hottest May in recorded history.     


Questions to Consider: What are some reasons (both from human and physical geography) for this severe drought? What can be done in the short-term to lessen the problem? What can be done to make California’s water situation better for the next 50 years?


Tags: physical, weather and climate, consumptionCalifornia, water, environment, resources, environment dependurban ecology.

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Leslie Kelsey's curator insight, June 25, 2014 12:24 PM

As California's rain shortage continues, this may be a useful site for teachers and students to explore the drought over time. 

Character Minutes's curator insight, June 25, 2014 12:56 PM

Use to emphasize the need to apply character traits of resourceful and thrifty.

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Colorado River Reaches the Sea of Cortez

Colorado River Reaches the Sea of Cortez | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"When the Minute 319 'pulse flow' began in March 2014, it was not clear whether the effort would be enough to reconnect the Colorado River with the Sea of Cortez. Some hydrologists thought there might be just enough water; others were less optimistic. It turns out the optimists were right, though just barely. For the first time in sixteen years, the Colorado River was reunited with the Sea of Cortez on May 15, 2014."

Seth Dixon's insight:

California has had three consecutive years of below average rainfall and most reservoirs are far below their designed capacity; amid a drought this severe and wildfires, it is startling to hear of a project to restore some of the Colorado River Basin's natural patterns and ecology.  


Tags: physicalremote sensing, California, water, environmenturban ecology.

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Kate Buckland's curator insight, June 7, 2014 7:43 PM

Parallels with the Murray River...

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San Diego

Ever since I was a kid, I have always been mesmerized by extraordinary beauty of my hometown, San Diego. The city has many hidden treasures that have always captivated…
Seth Dixon's insight:

While there are wildfires raging in northern San Diego county (see interactive map), my heart goes out to family and friends there.  The recent drought in California makes the condition perfect for wildfires to spread.  This video is a nice glimpse of San Diego during better times.  

   

Tagsweather and climate, Californiawater, environment, urban ecology.

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