Incredible Images Of Earth Seen From Space

Daily Overview is a project by New Yorker Benjamin Grant that allows us to view our planet as astronauts see it from the comfort of our own desk. He posts satellite images of locations where humans have changed the landscape – for better or worse. Here are 13 incredible images of the Earth from above:

1. Abandoned diamond mine, Mirny, Eastern Siberia, Russia

From the sky, this looks like a giant concrete drain, but it an inactive diamond mine. It’s not surprising the satellite image is so vivid because this gigantic man-made hole is the second largest excavated hole on the planet. The open pit has a diameter of 3,900 feet and is 1,722 feet deep; so be careful you don’t fall in. Mir Mine was active for 44 years and produced 10 million carats of diamonds per year during its peak production in the 1960s. Wow! They say diamonds are a girl’s best friend. Reality star Kim Kardashian, who has been given some gorgeous diamond rocks in her time, would have been in her element.

2. Excavators at work at the Tagebau Hambach mine, Germany

Grant started Daily Overview after seeing a video about “The Overview Effect” – the sensation astronauts experience the first time they see Earth from space. It’s said that as people peer down at our planet from far away, it suddenly seems vulnerable and they have an overwhelming urge to protect it. This is a photograph of the massive excavation at Hambach opencast mine, at Tagebau in Germany, which has fuelled many a heated environmental debate. Colossal excavators continuously dig for soft brown lignite coal to feed a nearby power plant. These 300-feet tall diggers are 730 feet long and would dwarf the biggest of transformers. Work started in 1978 and the mine, which contains 2.5 billion tons of lignite, is currently 1,213 feet deep.
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