Shocking Maps Show How Humans Have Reshaped Earth Since 1992 - Motherboard
“There is so much talk about the change in environment,” Stepinski told me over the phone. “But surprisingly enough, there was not a map. There are maps of individual land cover issues, like forest or agriculture. But there was not a map of everything.”
To fill this gap, Stepinski and his colleagues used satellite data collected by the European Space Agency’s Climate Change Initiative, which included geospatial maps of land cover designed to monitor climate change.
The team broke these maps into 81-kilometer-squared tracts and created a legend of color-coded tiles based on nine broad types of transitions that occurred between 1992 and 2015 (agriculture gains in yellow, forest losses in maroon, etc). The tiles are shaded to reflect the degree of change, with the lightest shade corresponding to regions altered by less than 10 percent, and dark patches representing regions that shifted by 30 percent or more.