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011_ Interview: view from above

10 November, 2020 - 2 min read

011_ Interview: view from above

If you had a view of our planet from space, what would you notice if you looked at it long enough?

The regularity of certain patterns.

Snow should be easy to spot.

Then maybe weather regularities, hurricanes and typhoons have pretty distinguishable features.

What about the past two hundred cycles around the sun would stand out more than nearly any other?

Thank you for finding this episode of _bandwidth: coast to coast.

If you were an alien, and every once in a while a specific part of your alien bureaucracy would point a telescope-like device over at our star system for a looksee.

Their department of interstellar geospatial intelligence would be having quite a lot of interest on our planet right now.

It wasn’t until talking with my guest that I had a thought of looking at our moment from that perspective.

Looking at earth from above, it’s easy to see that the chemistry of the atmosphere is changing rapidly.

What’s causing that, is a multitude of factors that are contributed to in wildly different ways depending on the region.

Fossil fuels, deforestation, concrete, these are some of the factors that get brought up during this interview in particular.

My guest today spends his days looking at the earth from above, using satellite imagery to map changes on the earth and won a Copernicus award for his work using satellites to monitor forest fires.

Dr. Heiko Baltzer, professor of geography at the University of Leicester, lends me his perspective of the earth from above.

We talk about a lot, but some of the highlights are him shedding some light on the forest fires in Siberia, which are happening in the largest contingent forest in the world, the state of deforestation around the world, along with what carbon sinks are and why we need them.

Dr. Baltzer gives just a glimpse into his work to bring more awareness to the changes in the time we live.

For maybe, if we know more, more of the change will be for the good.

Drums and then begin.

-J.R.

This was an excerpt from the intro essay to _bandwidth: coast to coast

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