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Portal:Geography

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Introduction

Physical map of Earth with political borders as of 2016

Geography (from Greek: γεωγραφία, geographia, literally "earth description") is a field of science devoted to the study of the lands, features, inhabitants, and phenomena of Earth. The first person to use the word γεωγραφία was Eratosthenes (276–194 BC). Geography is an all-encompassing discipline that seeks an understanding of Earth and its human and natural complexities—not merely where objects are, but also how they have changed and come to be.

Geography is often defined in terms of two branches: human geography and physical geography. Human geography deals with the study of people and their communities, cultures, economies, and interactions with the environment by studying their relations with and across space and place. Physical geography deals with the study of processes and patterns in the natural environment like the atmosphere, hydrosphere, biosphere, and geosphere.

True-color image of the Earth's surface and atmosphere. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center image.
True-color image of the Earth's surface and atmosphere. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center image.
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Dawson Creek
Dawson Creek is a small city in northeastern British Columbia, Canada. It covers an area of 20.66 square kilometres (7.98 sq mi)* in the dry and windy prairie land of the Peace River Country. The city is in the British Columbia Peace Lowland ecosection of the Canadian Boreal Plains ecozone on the continental Interior Platform. Located in the Cordillera Climatic Region, it lies at the southern end of a subarctic climate. The 1941 census, the first to include Dawson Creek as a defined subdivision, counted 518 residents. In 2011 the city had a population of 11,583. Growth slowed in the 1960s, with the population reaching its all-time high in 1966, although since 1992 the city has grown and undergone several boundary expansions. Dubbed "The Capital of the Peace", it is a service centre for the rural areas south of the Peace River and the seat of the Peace River Regional District. Once a small farming community, Dawson Creek became a regional centre when the western terminus of the Northern Alberta Railways was extended there in 1932. The community grew rapidly in 1942 as the US Army used the rail terminus as a transshipment point during construction of the Alaska Highway. In the 1950s the city was connected to the interior of British Columbia via a highway and railway through the Rocky Mountains.

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Georg Forster
Georg Forster was an 18th-century German naturalist, ethnologist, travel writer, journalist, and revolutionary. At an early age, he accompanied his father on several scientific expeditions, including James Cook's second voyage to the Pacific. His report from that journey, A Voyage Round the World, contributed significantly to the ethnology of the people of Polynesia and remains a respected work among both scientists and ordinary readers. As a result of the report Forster was admitted to the Royal Society at the age of 22 and he came to be considered one of the founders of modern scientific travel literature. Forster was a central figure of the Enlightenment in Germany, and corresponded with most of its adherents, including Georg Christoph Lichtenberg who was a close friend of his. His ideas and personality influenced strongly one of the greatest German scientists of 19th century, Alexander von Humboldt. In July 1793, while he was in Paris as a delegate of the young Mainz Republic, Prussian and Austrian coalition forces regained control of the city and Forster was declared an outlaw. Unable to return to Germany and separated from his friends and family, he died in Paris of illness in early 1794.

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Salar de Talar
Credit: Luca Galuzzi

The Salar de Talar salt flat, located in the Central Andean dry puna region of the Chilean Andes with Cerros de Incahuasi in the distance. The salt flat covers an area of about 46 km2 (18 sq mi) and is one of many salt lakes and salt flats located at the foothills of a chain of volcanoes stretching along the eastern side of the much greater Salar de Atacama.

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Stephen F. Chadwick
Stephen F. Chadwick, Governor's Biennial Message (1878)

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