A high resolution tour of the vegetation on Earth

Posted to Maps  |  Tags: , ,  |  Nathan Yau

NOAA visualized global vegetation over a year, and the result is beautiful:

We’ve seen forestry maps before, some quite detailed, but this is the first I’ve seen it at this granularity over a period of time.

Although 75% of the planet is a relatively unchanging ocean of blue, the remaining 25% of Earth’s surface is a dynamic green. Data from the VIIRS sensor aboard the NASA/NOAA Suomi NPP satellite is able to detect these subtle differences in greenness. The resources on this page highlight our ever-changing planet, using highly detailed vegetation index data from the satellite, developed by scientists at NOAA. The darkest green areas are the lushest in vegetation, while the pale colors are sparse in vegetation cover either due to snow, drought, rock, or urban areas. Satellite data from April 2012 to April 2013 was used to generate these animations and images.

The changes are especially obvious as the season moves to summer, going from snow-covered to deep green.

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