The impact of mankind on the environment can cause great changes to the earth’s topography within a few decades, but for the people living in it, the span is so large that it seems that there is no change. Now Google Earth (Google Earth), in its biggest update since 2017, has added past satellite images to produce global “time-lag videos”, adding a time dimension to Google Earth. Google cooperated with NASA, USGS and ESA to obtain more than 24 million images from Landsat and Sentinel series satellites from 1984 to 2020, and overlay them on Google Earth, so that everyone can see the changes in various places during the 36 years.
After opening Google Earth, click the rudder symbol on the left, and then click “Timelapse in Google Earth“You can see the changing earth. In addition to exploring on its own, Google has also produced five themes “The Changing Forest”, “The Fragile Beauty”, “The Source of Energy”, “The Warming Planet” and “The Expansion of the City”. You can see this Under the five themes, areas where changes are particularly significant. I am a native of Kaohsiung. The most obvious change in Kaohsiung in the past 36 years is probably after the lime bank mining of Chaishan and Banpingshan was over, it was once again covered by green forests.
In addition to being fun, this tool is of course more meaningful for education, providing intuitive visual presentations for urbanization, desertification, retreat of glaciers, deforestation and other phenomena. This also reminds us that the ability of human beings to change the earth is extremely powerful, and the world can have such a big change in less than 40 years. When making any new changes, environmental assessment can’t really just take a formality, but should consider the impact on future children and grandchildren.