Map Shows How Humans Have Changed The Surface Of Planet Earth

Maps have always been used by people to get a better sense of a place. Meanwhile, illustrated maps are unlike the simple folded paper map with roadways and railroad tracks. For example, the Arizona Illustrated Map is a cityscape art with important landmarks and physical elements of a landscape presented in brilliant design and colors.

Another type of map is created by researchers using high resolution satellite images from the European State Agency. The map shows how humans have irreversibly changed the planet earth for the last 25 years. Nearly one fourth of the habitable earth’s surface has changed from forest to agriculture between 1992 and 2015. The map also shows the deforestation in the tropics and the dramatic disappearance of the Aral Sea.

According to Professor Tomasz Stepinski from the University of Cincinnati, the map that he created raises alarm bells on the changes that impact the environment. There is deforestation, wetland loss and urbanization including landscape changes across Europe and Asia.

The European State Agency started to capture satellite images of the earth to be able to study climate changes in 1992. According to Professor Stepinski, surface cover dramatically influences temperature depending on whether it reflects or absorbs sunlight. Forest cover absorbs more carbon dioxide than cities and urban areas.

The satellite images are extremely detailed that researchers were able to organize them into 300-sqm grids called pixels. Each pixel identifies changes within 22 land-use categories with descriptions on the various types of farmland, forest, wetlands, grasslands and urban development.

The most prominent examples of changing land use can be foundin cities. The direct impact of human actions is reflected through patterns of urbanization in North America and Europe. The map of the United States shows huge losses in wetlands in the Southeast including growing urbanization in outside cities.

The most popular tourist destinations in the state can be found in the Arizona Illustrated Map that was created through the combination of hand drawn and digital technique. You can find the 3D map illustration at the website of Budget Travel Magazine April 2011 issue. You can commission an illustrated map of your city, school campus or facility to achieve your marketing objective.