Average Plant Growth Of The Earth
Photograph - Photograph
This pair of images contrasts average plant growth in 2002 to growth in 2008, revealing small interannual changes. The images are part of our series World of Change Global Biosphere. On land, the highest concentration of plant growth (dark green) tends to be concentrated in tropical regions around the equator, where rainfall and sunlight are abundant. In the ocean, the highest chlorophyll concentrations (yellow) are in cold polar waters or in places where ocean currents bring cold water to the surface, such as around the equator and along the shores of continents. In these regions, tiny plant-like organisms called phytoplankton flourish because the cold water tends to bring nutrients to the surface. The images are an annual average, so seasonal changes are erased. Instead, the contrast between 2002 and 2008 reveals small differences in weather patterns between the two years.
December 7th, 2011
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