Video: How world has changed in last few decades

Google captures over 25 years of images of Earth taken from space

Footage released by Google Earth Engine shows how the world has changed over the last few decades from human activities like construction, mining, irrigation and deforestation.

Working with the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), NASA and TIME, the tech giant has released more than a quarter-century of images of Earth taken from space, compiled for the first time into an interactive time-lapse experience.

Among the areas of focus are Dubai's artificial Palm Islands and irrigation works in Saudi Arabia, as well as the urban growth of Las Vegas and deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon.

Built from millions of satellite images and trillions of pixels, the global, zoomable time-lapse map can be explored as part of TIME's new Timelapse project. 

Each frame of the images is taken from a year of Landsat satellite data which has been collecting images since 1972.

The technology also captures the fate of glaciers and desert irrigation schemes, taking just seconds to show decades worth of changes.

Google made the images available online as a way to allow non-profit groups to “visualise their cause” the Earth Outreach program reports.




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