One of a number of large wildfires that have affected northern California in 2012, the Chips fire burned more than 75,000 acres by the time firefighters had contained it.
2012 is going to go down as the year in United States history as the year with the most acrec burned in a single year (statistics only go back to 1960). The two featured images were taken earlier this month to display a Northern California wildfire; both with the same spatial resolution and acquired for the same instrument (Advanced Land Imager on EO-1 satellite), yet they are quite distinct. One shows an aerial photograph, displaying exactly what standard visible portion of the electromagnetic spectrum (showing us what our eyes would normally see). The other image displays a false color (near infrared) image.
Questions to ponder: what advantages does each image have for analyzing the fire damage? Drawbacks? How does the data from both images work together to create a more complete picture of the situation?
Tags: remote sensing, images, environment, land use, disasters, biogeography.
The Brazilian government's geographic department (Instituto Brasileiro de Geografia e Estatística-roughly equivalent to the U.S. Census Bureau) has compiled an fantastic interactive world factbook (available in English and Spanish as well as Portuguese). The ease of navigation allows the user to conduct a specific search of simply explore demographic, economic, environmental and development data on any country in the world.