Sci-tech

See 20 years of Earth's season changes in under a minute

See 20 years of Earth's season changes in under a minute

A new NASA time lapse shows 20 years of seasonal landscape changes around the globe, condensing the years down to a mere 2.5 minutes. Meanwhile, the changing colours of the ocean show undersea life thriving - or dying. The changes in temperature have resulted in more green matter in the Arctic; the shrubs have extended beyond their typical range as areas become warmer than they were in past years. While NASA and other agencies are observing Earth through satellite since 1970s, the global view was not dynamic until the launch of the Sea-viewing Wide Field-of-view Sensor (SeaWiFS) in 1997. "It's never been done before and so being able to capture land, ocean, atmosphere, ice, over 20 years together - it's insanely cool", NASA oceanographer Dr. Jeremy Werdell told CBS News correspondent Chip Reid.

"It's like all of my senses are being transported into space, and then you can compress time and rewind it, and just continually watch this kind of visualization". They've observed fisheries evolving, deserts expanding, spring coming earlier and fall coming later all over the world and in our region. He also pointed out the Arctic - and the Antarctic - ice caps receding over time.

In considerably smaller Lake Erie, one of the five Great Lakes in North America, more and more contaminating algae blooms are apparent - appearing red and yellow.

The animation shows our planet's seasonal fluctuations as seen from space after the U.S. space agency condensed two decades of data into just a few minutes.

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Hu said that unravelling these questions will help us address larger questions about the evolution of rocky planets.

Programmer Alex Kekesi of NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, says it took three months to compile the visualization.

Let's hope that those in charge pay enough attention to make sure that Earth doesn't change too much with it.


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