Saturday, July 15, 2017

Geographical comparisons of Antarctic iceberg

One of the very, very few fun aspects of the recent news about a huge iceberg calving off the Larsen C ice shelf in Antarctica recently is the way the size of the iceberg, which is one of the largest ever observed, has been reported in the press.
The iceberg is around 2,200 square miles (or about 5,600 square kilometers) in size, and weighs around a trillion tons. To put this in some perspective that us mere mortals might be able to relate to, the media has usually reported it as a comparison with some local area. For example, in Canada it is usually described as being about the size of the province of Prince Edward Island. In the USA, it has been reported as the size of the state of Delaware. But each jurisdiction around the world seems to have its own comparison, and Quartz magazine has collected some of these together. You might notice that some of these are more obvious, or more convincing or useful, than others:
  • Argentina: 25 times the size of Buenos Aires.
  • Australia: twice the size of the National Capital Territory.
  • Belgium: half the size of Flanders.
  • Brazil: the size of the Federal Disrict.
  • Chile: the size of the Cordillera Province.
  • Cyprus: equivalent to two Luxembourgs.
  • Denmark: twice the size of the Danish island of Funen.
  • Finland: twice the size of the Swedish island of Gotland.
  • France: 60 times larger than Paris.
  • Germany: twice the size of the German state of Saarland.
  • Greece: the size of the island of Crete.
  • India: one and-a-half times the size of the state of Goa.
  • Indonesia: almost as large as the island of Bali.
  • Italy: the size of the region of Liguria.
  • Japan: the size of Mie Prefecture.
  • Mexico: 55 times the size of Paris.
  • Netherlands: slightly larger than the province of Gelderland.
  • Norway: the size of the county of Akershus.
  • Poland: the size of the province of Malopolska.
  • Russia: a quarter the size of the region of Moscow.
  • South Korea: half the size of Gyeonngi province.
  • Taiwan: one-sixth the size of Taiwan.
  • Turkey: four times the size of Istanbul.
  • UK: a quarter the size of Wales.
  • Ukraine: half the size of Transcarpathian region.

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