In the marine environment, remote sensing provides data for a wide variety of environmental variables (Table 4). Optical remote-sensing methods are commonly used to map the ocean-land interface and coral reefs. Methods

Table 3 Information about the atmosphere derived from remote sensing

Aerosol loading and size distribution over oceans

Aerosol content and optical thickness over land

Water vapor (precipitable water)

Cloud optical thickness

Cloud top temperature and height

Cloud locations

Cloud particle phase

Cloud particle radius

Total-column ozone content

Atmospheric wind and temperature profiles

Table 4 Information about marine ecosystems derived from remote sensing

Sea surface temperature Ocean color (productivity) Coral reef mapping Ocean surface topography Oil slick detection and mapping Ocean circulation Wind speed and direction Fluorescence used for these applications are similar to those used for terrestrial land cover mapping except there is greater use of the short-wavelength blue bands for coral reef mapping since those wavelengths are better able to penetrate into the water to provide more information on features several meters under the water surface.

Two other common global marine data sets are sea surface temperature, which is derived using methods similar to those used for land temperature, and ocean color which uses optical imagery to determine levels of phytoplankton in the water. Both of these data sets are acquired on a daily basis.

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Renewable Energy 101

Renewable Energy 101

Renewable energy is energy that is generated from sunlight, rain, tides, geothermal heat and wind. These sources are naturally and constantly replenished, which is why they are deemed as renewable. The usage of renewable energy sources is very important when considering the sustainability of the existing energy usage of the world. While there is currently an abundance of non-renewable energy sources, such as nuclear fuels, these energy sources are depleting. In addition to being a non-renewable supply, the non-renewable energy sources release emissions into the air, which has an adverse effect on the environment.

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