"Yes, Mr. President," the headline says. "We Remade Our Atlas to Reflect Shrinking Ice"
In a speech about climate change, Barack Obama had noted that over the years, National Geographic maps of the arctic had changed. The 10th edition of its Atlas of the World, especially, shows a much-diminished ice cap—and even more is gone in the 2014 edition.
As the ocean heats up due to global warming, Arctic sea ice has been locked in a downward spiral. Since the late 1970s, the ice has retreated by 12 percent per decade, worsening after 2007, according to NASA. May 2014 represented the third lowest extent of sea ice during that month in the satellite record, according to the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC).
Ice loss is accelerated in the Arctic because of a phenomenon known as the feedback loop: Thin ice is less reflective than thick ice, allowing more sunlight to be absorbed by the ocean, which in turn weakens the ice and warms the ocean even more, NASA says.
Enclaves appear when history contrives to put a piece of one country completely inside another. India and Bangladesh's border is a maze of them, but they've just fixed the craziest of them all: an enclave surrounded by an enclave surrounded by an enclave surrounded by another state.
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Attempts to rectify the situation have stalled for decades: An agreement for a land swap was reached in 1974, but India did not ratify it. In 2011, however, a new agreement was reached, which, after some stalling, was finally ratified in June. The enclaves will become territory of the states that surround them and the citizens who live within them will get to decide whether they want to stay put and accept new citizenship, or whether they want to keep their original citizenship and be relocated.
Debris having washed ashore on Réunion, tracing the tides—and the genetics of encrusted barnacles living on the flaperon—gives us new clues to the final resting place of the lost jet. Read the rest
Cities in the south such as Montgomery, Ala., Memphis, Tenn., and Richmond, Va., dominate the higher reaches of the list, but you just can't hold down Philly.
The data used here comes from the CDC for 2013, and reflects reports of syphilis, gonorrhea and chlamydia. (Herpes data is not collected). To normalize the data, we measured rates per 100,000 people. We chose only to show cities with a significant amount of population, so rural counties are not show on this map. The CDC makes available a wide range of statistical, anonymous data about STDs in America.
Above, a map of the "Square and Stationary Earth" (1893) by a Professor Orlando Ferguson of Hot Springs, South Dakota. Read the rest
The most common way of representing Africa on maps and globes dramatically understates the size of the continent. Read the rest