Geography Education
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Geography Education
Supporting geography educators everywhere with current digital resources.
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Aerial Photos of Iceland Volcanic Rivers

Aerial Photos of Iceland Volcanic Rivers | Geography Education |

On occasion, we are reminded of how utterly captivating and gorgeous nature is, its visual poetry surrounds us. It just takes a step back, a shift in perspective, to realize how amazing the constructs of this planet are; it’s a beautiful constant balance between order and entropy. Case in point, what appears to be well-crafted, intricate abstract paintings, or works of art, are in reality, mindblowing aerial images of Iceland."

Seth Dixon's insight:

Andre Ermolaev, through his photography has captured the beauty of Iceland's geomorphology.  Being on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, Iceland has abundant volcanic ash which adds rich color to the fluvial systems.  


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

Joaquín del Val's curator insight, May 27, 2016 1:20 PM
Espectaculares imágenes de canales fluviales en Islandia
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An Atlas of the Vikings

An Atlas of the Vikings | Geography Education |

"Scandinavia's history has always been shaped by its geography and orientation to the sea.  The shortage of good farmland in Scandinavia on the whole, however, compelled the Vikings to journey outward. Thus, the sea became an omnipresent part of life. Not only did the barrenness of the soil make the sea an important source of food, but the region's terrain made water the easier mode of travel for the thinly scattered populations of Scandinavia."

Seth Dixon's insight:

A student of mine produced this excellent Story Map after being inspired by the History Channel's TV show, Vikings.  History is so often shaped by geographic factors and better understood with maps.     


Tags: mappinghistorical, StoryMapESRI, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Iceland, Norway.

Jamie Strickland's comment, January 12, 2016 3:45 PM
Seth, this is fantastic!! I am interested in using StoryMaps more in my classes, so this really inspires me!!
Michelle Nimchuk's curator insight, January 26, 2016 11:47 AM

This story map was created by a student who was inspired after watching a History Channel's Viking show.  Incredible demonstration of allowing students to take an interest and fly with it.

Lilydale High School's curator insight, March 23, 2016 6:07 AM

A student of mine produced this excellent Story Map after being inspired by the History Channel's TV show, Vikings.  History is so often shaped by geographic factors and better understood with maps.     


Tags: mapping, historical, StoryMap,  ESRI, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Iceland, Norway.

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How to Follow the Iceland and Papua New Guinea Volcano Eruptions

How to Follow the Iceland and Papua New Guinea Volcano Eruptions | Geography Education |
Webcams, Twitter, and data visualizations show you what's going on with Bárðarbunga and Mount Tavurvur.
Jake Red Dorman's curator insight, November 13, 2014 10:50 AM

Air travel was almost all in code red when Iceland’s volcano Bárðarbunga and Papa New Guinea’s volcano Tavurvur erupted at the same time one day. All of Europe was in code red and also the Middle East, East Asia, Southeast Asia, South Asia, Australia, Russia, parts in Africa, and even in parts of South America. All other places such as the United States, United Kingdom and Canada were all in code orange. I’m not sure if this happened by coincidence since Papa New Guinea’s volcano is very active or that it is somehow connected, But I was looking at the tectonic plates and it doesn’t seem like they are connected, but there are plate lines located exactly where the volcanos are. I am guessing this happened dues to both of those plates moving at the same time, creating a simultaneous eruption.

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Volcanic Forces, Human Impacts

Rogério Rocha's comment, March 28, 2013 11:30 AM
Thanks for the post.
Josue Maroquin's comment, August 12, 2013 10:12 PM
Amazing how the ash spread out over the world
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Iceland's Volcanic Rivers

Iceland's Volcanic Rivers | Geography Education |
Time and time again, we're reminded of nature's beauty. It's hard to believe, but these photos of real landscapes, not abstract paintings.

Andre Ermolaev, through his photography has captured the beauty of Iceland's geomorphology.  Being on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, Iceland has abundant volcanic ash which adds rich color to the fluvial systems.  


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

Cam E's curator insight, February 27, 2014 11:20 AM

Iceland is one of my favorite countries, and the place I most want to visit and would most likely move to if I had to leave the United States. The landscape is insanely beautiful and the population is extremely small, something I enjoy as I dislike cities and a high population density. Even the capital of Iceland looks akin to a relatively average fishing town in the Northern US or Canada, and the entire country has less people in it than any given state in the US.

Wilmine Merlain's curator insight, December 18, 2014 2:57 PM

Nature has an incredible way at depicting and displaying its true beauty to the rest of the world. These images captured by photographer Andre Ermolaev looks like something that would be captured at a museum opening displaying some remarkable pieces of abstract work. Though this may not be the case, it gives you the desire to want to travel and experience this for yourself.

Keone Sinnott-Suardana's curator insight, June 22, 2016 9:39 PM
Suggested by Mike Busarello's Digital Storybooks!

"Green" Iceland gets greener

"Green" Iceland gets greener | Geography Education |

Country that is 100 percent powered by renewable energy taps into new natural resource.


Tags: Iceland, energy.

Mike Oehme's curator insight, January 26, 2016 2:50 AM

geothermal energy for the future

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Scandinavian Energy Usage

Scandinavian Energy Usage | Geography Education |

Which countries consume the most electricity per person? You might guess the United States would top the World Bank’s list, but the Nordic countries of Iceland, Norway, Finland, and Sweden are actually at or near the top. Icelanders consume an average of 52,374 kilowatt hours per person per year, Norwegians 23,174 kilowatt hours, Finns 15,738 kilowatt hours, and Swedes 14,030 kilowatt hours. Americans are not far behind, with an average consumption of 13,246 kilowatt hours per person. The Japanese consume 7,848 kilowatt hours.

This image is part of a global composite assembled from data acquired by the Suomi National Polar-orbiting Partnership (Suomi NPP) satellite in 2012. The nighttime view of Earth was made possible by the “day-night band” of the Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite. VIIRS detects light in a range of wavelengths from green to near-infrared and uses filtering techniques to observe dim signals such as city lights, wildfires, and gas flares. The city lights of several major Nordic cities are visible in the imagery, including Stockholm, Sweden (population 905,184); Oslo, Norway (634,463); Helsinki, Finland (614,074), and Reykjavik, Iceland (121,490).

Tags: Europeenergyremote sensing, development, Sweden, Finland, Iceland, Norway.

Lena Minassian's curator insight, February 18, 2015 7:17 PM

This articles discusses which countries use the most electricity and believe it or not, the Nordic countries are at the top of the list. It shows two satellite images in the nighttime for you to get a better visual as to which areas of these countries use the most electricity. There are multiple factors that go into these countries consuming this much energy. One factor that is interesting is the high demand for electricity because of the long winters in these countries. 

Kevin Cournoyer's curator insight, May 6, 2015 9:34 AM

These images are really interesting and expose just how much electricity the Scandinavian countries actually use. It is surprising to think of these nations as large energy consumers because of their general reputation as progressive, clean, and liberal places. This brief article is an excellent example of how maps and satellite images can be misleading, though. As opposed to places like the U.S. or China, energy consumption in the Scandinavian countries actually produces only small amounts of greenhouse gases and is based on renewable energy sources. 


This shows an interesting and not immediately apparent geographic distinction between the Scandinavian countries and places such as China and the U.S. Chinese and United States energy consumption is enormous because of those countries' ability and desire to produce large amounts of goods quickly. Household energy use is also high because of the widespread use of electronics such as televisions, computers, and appliances. The Scandinavian countries, on the other hand, have a need for increased energy use because of their geographic location: long, dark winters mean an increased need for electricity and for longer periods. Also, Scandinavia is able to produce energy at lower costs due to its use of renewable energy sources. So though those countries may consume much more energy than their non-Scandinavian counterparts, they are doing so responsibly and for a reason. 

Katie Kershaw's curator insight, February 22, 11:41 AM
This map of Scandinavian energy usage holds a lot of insight to what this region of the world is like.  Shockingly, Scandinavians all use more electricity per person per hour than the U.S.  The people in Iceland use the most electricity of any other country and they use more than double the next closest consumer, at 52,374 kw/hour.  This made me scratch my head a bit at first, because when I think of large energy consumers I think of Americans with huge t.v.s with surround sound, central air, and more useless kitchen appliances than anywhere else.  However, the article goes on to explain the conditions that contribute to Scandinavians high power usage.  First of all, they are located in a region with a very harsh climate.  They must use tons of electricity to heat their buildings.  Additionally the months of darkness in some regions require lights to be in constant use.  Another regional factor that leads to high electricity usage is manufacturing.  Since the region is abundant in natural resources like aluminum, a lot of electricity is needed to turn these resources into usable goods.  The natural resources in Scandanavia also keeps electricity prices cheap, so people are more likely to use high amounts.  Despite the high electricity usage by Scandanavians make minimal pollution because the sources of power they use are renewable resources.  This makes sense because these countries are able to harness a lot of hydropower with their access to the ocean and waterfalls. 
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Uneven Population Distribution

Uneven Population Distribution | Geography Education |

"60% of Iceland's population lives in the red area."

Seth Dixon's insight:

Similar to Iceland, Australia's population is also highly clustered.    

Questions to Ponder: Why is Iceland's population so highly clustered?  What is it about the red (and white) areas on the map that explain this pattern?  What other layers of information do we need to properly contextualize this information?  

Tags: Iceland, population, density.

Sid McIntyre-DeLaMelena's curator insight, May 29, 2014 12:39 PM

The majority of Iceland's population lives in that one space.

The geography of Iceland keeps the majority of people in the place that sustains life and comfort the best and easiest.

Kaitlin Young's curator insight, December 13, 2014 10:50 AM

Iceland is a beautiful place, yet hash climates and landscapes make it hard for equal population distribution. At the same time, its population is under 400,000 people, making it a relatively small population compared to those of other European countries. With a population that small, it almost makes sense for people to live closer to one another. It would be easier to build infrastructure in a smaller area than to spread it out all over the island, where it would hardly be utilized. Also, the one densely populated area allows for a creative center where money and ideas can be developed.

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Iceland wants to ban Internet porn

Iceland wants to ban Internet porn | Geography Education |
Iceland is working on banning Internet pornography, calling explicit online images a threat to children.
Seth Dixon's insight:

Given the cultural values and legal traditions of Western Europe in general (and Scandinavia more specifically), Iceland stands apart on this particular issue.  While most Western countries would see this as a freedom of speech issue, many in Iceland view it as child protection issue. 

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Ephemeral islands and other states-in-waiting

Ephemeral islands and other states-in-waiting | Geography Education |
architectural conjecture :: urban speculation :: landscape futures...


In the 1960s when the island of Surtsey (literally) erupted onto the scene off the coast of Iceland, it's national sovereignty was not really called into question.  The seamount, or near island named Ferdinandea in the Mediterranean is not even an island yet and countries are already positioning themselves to claim it.  Only 6 feet below sea level, this seamount is incredibly valuable real estate because is a country can successfully came this territory, they could also lay claim to an Exclusive Economic Zone, extending up to 200 nautical miles beyond the coast.

Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, April 24, 2014 8:23 PM

When I read something like this all I can think is maybe this is what happened to Atlantis.  What if Atlantis was an island like this that existed just long enough for people to build a society on and then it sank beneath the sea.  Another think this makes me think of is the novel “Jingo” by Terry Pratchett, in it an island rises from the sea and leads to a war over which country owns it.  This is just an interesting phenomenon that leads to world arguments.

Jacob Crowell's curator insight, December 15, 2014 4:29 PM

The EEZ policy that exist has made every space up for contentious conflict. The miles off the coast of Surtsey and other small islands have become valuable because of EEZ and conflict exist over islands that are uninhabited and useless. Economic geography can influence political geography when it comes to these small island and their exclusive economic zone.

Felix Ramos Jr.'s curator insight, March 12, 2015 10:46 AM

You have to be joking with me!!!!!!!!


Claims for a volcanic-induced mass of land?  In this day and age, one would hope that something like this would not lead to a long and drawn-out dispute.  There is much more pertinent issues present in this world.

 How about this for an idea?  Let's leave the "island" neutral and allow it it to be used as a temporary destination for whomever visits it.  It should be protected and preserved by everyone interested but not so much that visitors cannot temporarily explore and enjoy the island.