Wednesday, December 6, 2017

NASA Shares 20 Years of Climate Change Impact

I've heard it said that as soon as astronauts hit outer space, they turned the cameras back on ourselves and our planet. I'd imagine, back in the day, being able to see what our giant blue planet looks like for the first time was probably pretty awe-inspiring.

December 7, 1972 was that first photo date. Our first planetary selfie. This now-famous photo was known as the "Blue Marble," and the Apollo 17 crew did a beautiful job with this snap shot.

NASA's still taking pictures of our planet, nearly 45 years later. This time, in video form. A pretty amazing 5 minutes and change.

This video is a compilation from NASA of nearly half of those 45 photo years.  This data visualization & compilation was released mid-November.  In it, you see:

  • The polar ice caps waxing and waning with the seasons...and shrinking over time
  • Oceanic colors that showcase the life that is (and is not) under the ocean's surface.
  • The green-ness moving further north, taking the place of where ice should be covering land.
Close analysis also shows algae blooms, a shrinking Lake Erie, and evidence of warmer temperatures further north.

In a world where climate change has become a partisan issue, perhaps data such as these will help open the eyes of policy makers so that our big "Blue Marble" continues to breathe, thrive, and survive.

To read more about this, check out this article.

NASA logo from; "Blue Marble" photo from National Geographic: 
Video from

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