Greenland is an autonomous constituent country within the Danish Realm between the Arctic and Atlantic Oceans, east of the Canadian Arctic Archipelago. Though physiographically a part of the continent of North America, Greenland has been politically and culturally associated with Europe for more than a millennium. The majority of its residents are Inuit, whose ancestors began migrating from the Canadian mainland in the 13th century, Greenland is the worlds largest island. Three-quarters of Greenland is covered by the permanent ice sheet outside Antarctica. With a population of about 56,480, it is the least densely populated country in the world, the Arctic Umiaq Line ferry acts as a lifeline for western Greenland, connecting the various cities and settlements. Greenland has been inhabited off and on for at least the last 4,500 years by Arctic peoples whose forebears migrated there from what is now Canada, Norsemen settled the uninhabited southern part of Greenland beginning in the 10th century, and Inuit peoples arrived in the 13th century.
The Norse colonies disappeared in the late 15th century, soon after their demise, beginning in 1499, the Portuguese briefly explored and claimed the island, naming it Terra do Lavrador. In the early 18th century, Scandinavian explorers reached Greenland again, to strengthen trading and power, Denmark-Norway affirmed sovereignty over the island. Greenland was settled by Vikings more than a thousand years ago, Vikings set sail from Greenland and Iceland, discovering North America nearly 500 years before Columbus reached Caribbean islands. Though under continuous influence of Norway and Norwegians, Greenland was not formally under the Norwegian crown until 1262, the Kingdom of Norway was extensive and a military power until the mid-14th century. Thus, the two kingdoms resources were directed at creating Copenhagen, Norway became the weaker part and lost sovereignty over Greenland in 1814 when the union was dissolved. Greenland became a Danish colony in 1814, and was made a part of the Danish Realm in 1953 under the Constitution of Denmark, in 1973, Greenland joined the European Economic Community with Denmark.
However, in a referendum in 1982, a majority of the population voted for Greenland to withdraw from the EEC which was effected in 1985, Greenland contains the worlds largest and most northernly national park, Northeast Greenland National Park. Greenland is divided into four municipalities - Sermersooq, Qaasuitsup and it retains control of monetary policy, providing an initial annual subsidy of DKK3.4 billion, which is planned to diminish gradually over time. Greenland expects to grow its economy based on increased income from the extraction of natural resources, the capital, held the 2016 Arctic Winter Games. At 70%, Greenland has one of the highest shares of renewable energy in the world, the early Viking settlers named the island as Greenland. In the Icelandic sagas, the Norwegian-born Icelander Erik the Red was said to be exiled from Iceland for manslaughter, along with his extended family and his thralls, he set out in ships to explore an icy land known to lie to the northwest. After finding an area and settling there, he named it Grœnland
Siberia is an extensive geographical region, and by the broadest definition is known as North Asia. Siberia has historically been a part of Russia since the 17th century, the territory of Siberia extends eastwards from the Ural Mountains to the watershed between the Pacific and Arctic drainage basins. It stretches southwards from the Arctic Ocean to the hills of north-central Kazakhstan and to the borders of Mongolia. With an area of 13.1 million square kilometres, Siberia accounts for 77% of Russias land area and this is equivalent to an average population density of about 3 inhabitants per square kilometre, making Siberia one of the most sparsely populated regions on Earth. If it were a country by itself, it would still be the largest country in area, the origin of the name is unknown. Some sources say that Siberia originates from the Siberian Tatar word for sleeping land, another account sees the name as the ancient tribal ethnonym of the Sirtya, a folk, which spoke a language that evolved into the Ugric languages.
This ethnic group was assimilated to the Siberian Tatar people. The modern usage of the name was recorded in the Russian language after the Empires conquest of the Siberian Khanate, a further variant claims that the region was named after the Xibe people. The Polish historian Chycliczkowski has proposed that the name derives from the word for north. He said that the neighbouring Chinese and Mongolians would not have known Russian and he suggests that the name is a combination of two words, su and bir. The region is of significance, as it contains bodies of prehistoric animals from the Pleistocene Epoch. Specimens of Goldfuss cave lion cubs and another woolly mammoth from Oymyakon, a rhinoceros from the Kolyma River. The Siberian Traps were formed by one of the largest known volcanic events of the last 500 million years of Earths geological history. They continued for a million years and are considered a cause of the Great Dying about 250 million years ago. At least three species of human lived in Southern Siberia around 40,000 years ago, H. sapiens, H. neanderthalensis, the last was determined in 2010, by DNA evidence, to be a new species.
Siberia was inhabited by different groups of such as the Enets, the Nenets, the Huns, the Scythians. The Khan of Sibir in the vicinity of modern Tobolsk was known as a prominent figure who endorsed Kubrat as Khagan of Old Great Bulgaria in 630, the Mongols conquered a large part of this area early in the 13th century. With the breakup of the Golden Horde, the autonomous Khanate of Sibir was established in the late 15th century, turkic-speaking Yakut migrated north from the Lake Baikal region under pressure from the Mongol tribes during the 13th to 15th century
Yukon is the smallest and westernmost of Canadas three federal territories. The territory has the smallest population of any province or territory in Canada, Whitehorse is the territorial capital and Yukons only city. The territory was split from the Northwest Territories in 1898 and was named the Yukon Territory, though officially bilingual, the Yukon Government recognizes First Nations languages. At 5,959 m, Yukons Mount Logan, in Kluane National Park and Reserve, is the highest mountain in Canada, most of Yukon has a subarctic climate, characterized by long cold winters and brief warm summers. The Arctic Ocean coast has a tundra climate, notable rivers include the Yukon River, after which the territory was named, as well as the Pelly, Peel and Tatshenshini rivers. Long before the arrival of Europeans and southern Yukon was populated by First Nations people, sites of archeological significance in Yukon hold some of the earliest evidence of the presence of human occupation in North America.
The sites safeguard the history of the first people and the earliest First Nations of the Yukon, the volcanic eruption of Mount Churchill in approximately 800 AD in what is now the U. S. Coastal and inland First Nations had extensive trading networks, European incursions into the area only began early in the 19th century with the fur trade, followed by missionaries. By the 1870s and 1880s gold miners began to arrive and this drove a population increase that justified the establishment of a police force, just in time for the start of the Klondike Gold Rush in 1897. The increased population coming with the gold led to the separation of the Yukon district from the Northwest Territories. Its northern coast is on the Beaufort Sea and its ragged eastern boundary mostly follows the divide between the Yukon Basin and the Mackenzie River drainage basin to the east in the Mackenzie mountains. Most of the territory is in the watershed of its namesake, the southern Yukon is dotted with a large number of large and narrow glacier-fed alpine lakes, most of which flow into the Yukon River system.
The larger lakes include Teslin Lake, Atlin Lake, Tagish Lake, Marsh Lake, Lake Laberge, Kusawa Lake, bennett Lake on the Klondike Gold Rush trail is a lake flowing into Nares Lake, with the greater part of its area within Yukon. Canadas highest point, Mount Logan, is in the territorys southwest, Mount Logan and a large part of the Yukons southwest are in Kluane National Park and Reserve, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Other national parks include Ivvavik National Park and Vuntut National Park in the north, other watersheds include the Mackenzie River, the Peel Watershed and the Alsek–Tatshenshini, and a number of rivers flowing directly into the Beaufort Sea. The two main Yukon rivers flowing into the Mackenzie in the Northwest Territories are the Liard River in the southeast, notable widespread tree species within Yukon are the black spruce and white spruce. Many trees are stunted because of the growing season and severe climate. The capital, Whitehorse, is the largest city, with about three-quarters of the population, the second largest is Dawson City, which was the capital until 1952
Norilsk is an industrial city in Krasnoyarsk Krai, located above the Arctic Circle, east of the Yenisei River and south of the western Taymyr Peninsula. It has a permanent population of 175,000, with temporary inhabitants included, its population reaches 220,000. Norilsk was closed in November 2001 to all non-Russians, except for Belarusians and it is the worlds northernmost city with more than 100,000 inhabitants and the second largest city inside the Arctic Circle. Norilsk and Vorkuta are the large cities in the continuous permafrost zone. It was granted urban-type settlement status in 1939 and town status in 1953, Norilsk is located between the West Siberian Plain and Central Siberian Plateau at the foot of the 1, 700-meter high Putoran Mountains, on some of the largest nickel deposits on Earth. Consequently and smelting ore are the major industries, Norilsk is the center of a region where nickel, cobalt, platinum and coal are mined. Talnakh is the major mine/enrichment site now from where an enriched ore emulsion is pumped to Norilsk metallurgy plants.
To support the new city, a railway to the port of Dudinka on the Yenisei River was established, first as a narrow-gauge line and this transportation only takes place during the summer. The port of Dudinka is closed and dismantled during springs ice barrier floods of up to 20 meters in late May. According to the archives of Norillag,16,806 prisoners died in Norilsk under the conditions of forced labor, fatalities were especially high during the war years of 1942–1944 when food supplies were particularly scarce. Prisoners organised the nonviolent Norilsk uprising in 1953, unknown but significant numbers of prisoners continued to serve and die in the mines until around 1979. Norilsk-Talknakh continues to be a mine to work in, according to the mining company. Since the early 2000s the city has been rebuilding itself and reshaping its image, bars on the top floors of apartments are appearing and buildings are getting renovated. As a municipal division, the city of Norilsk is incorporated as Norilsk Urban Okrug.
There is a mosque in Norilsk, built in 1998 belonging to the local Tatar community, it is considered to be the northernmost Muslim prayer house in the world. There is a Russian Orthodox cathedral, several Russian Orthodox churches, including temporary residents, the population reaches 220,000 people. Norilsk is the worlds northernmost city with more than 175,000 inhabitants, Norilsk and Vorkuta are the only large cities in the continuous permafrost zone. It lies between Taymyrsky Dolgano-Nenetsky District to the north, and Turukhansky District to the south, Norilsk has an extremely harsh subarctic climate, and is covered with snow for about 250–270 days a year, with snow storms for about 110–130 days
Sisimiut, formerly Holsteinsborg, is the capital and largest city of the Qeqqata municipality, and the second-largest city in Greenland. It is located in central-western Greenland, on the coast of Davis Strait, although now a place-name, Sisimiut literally means the people at the fox burrows. The population of modern Greenlanders in Sisimiut is a mix of the Inuit and Danish peoples, Sisimiut is the largest business center north of the national capital of Nuuk and is one of the fastest growing cities in Greenland. Fishing is the industry in Sisimiut, although the town has a growing industrial base. KNI and its subsidiary Pilersuisoq, a chain of all-purpose general stores in Greenland, have their base in Sisimiut. Architecturally, Sisimiut is a mix of traditional, single-family houses, Sisimiut is still expanding, with the area north of the port, on the shore of the small Kangerluarsunnguaq Bay reserved for a modern suburb-style housing slated for construction in the 2010s. Several professional and general schools are based in Sisimiut, providing education to the inhabitants of the city, the new Taseralik Culture Center is the second cultural center to be established in Greenland, after Katuaq in Nuuk.
The city has its own bus line, and is the northernmost year-round ice-free port in the country, supply ships head from the commercial port towards smaller settlements in more remote regions of Uummannaq Fjord, Upernavik Archipelago, and as far as Qaanaaq in northern Greenland. The town airport is served by Air Greenland, providing connections to towns on the western coast of Greenland. At that time, the shoreline was up to several meters above the present line. The Saqqaq remained in western Greenland for nearly two millennia, has uncovered the changing settlement pattern, exhibiting transition from the single-family dwellings to tiny villages of several families. The types of dwelling varied from tent rings made of the hides of hunted mammals, to stone hearths, despite recent advances in DNA research based on hair samples from the ancient Saqqaq migrants, the reason for the decline and subsequent disappearance of the culture are not yet known. After several hundred years of no permanent habitation, the wave of migration arrived from Canada.
The first wave of immigrants, known as Dorset I, arrived around 500 BCE, the Inuit of the Thule culture—whose descendants form the majority of the current population—arrived nearly a thousand years ago, with the first arrivals dated to approximately 13th and 14th century. The shoreline was still at a higher altitude than today, with the Sisimiut valley east of the Kangerluarsunnguaq Bay, many artifacts and graves from the several centuries of permanent settlement remain scattered in the region. There are no signs of Norse settlement in the region, at the time of its founding, the Kalaallisut name of the place was Amerlok, after its fjord. The colonists formally established several villages in the region, of only two remain to this day and Sarfannguit. Under the Royal Greenland Trading Department, Holsteinsborg was a center of the trade in reindeer skins, several 18th-century buildings still stand in Sisimiut, among them the 1725 Gammelhuset and the 1775 Bethel-kirken or Blå Kirke, the oldest surviving church in Greenland
The Equator usually refers to an imaginary line on the Earths surface equidistant from the North Pole and South Pole, dividing the Earth into the Northern Hemisphere and Southern Hemisphere. The Equator is about 40,075 kilometres long, some 78. 7% lies across water and 21. 3% over land, other planets and astronomical bodies have equators similarly defined. Generally, an equator is the intersection of the surface of a sphere with the plane that is perpendicular to the spheres axis of rotation. The latitude of the Earths equator is by definition 0° of arc, the equator is the only line of latitude which is a great circle — that is, one whose plane passes through the center of the globe. The plane of Earths equator when projected outwards to the celestial sphere defines the celestial equator, in the cycle of Earths seasons, the plane of the equator passes through the Sun twice per year, at the March and September equinoxes. To an observer on the Earth, the Sun appears to travel North or South over the equator at these times, light rays from the center of the Sun are perpendicular to the surface of the Earth at the point of solar noon on the Equator.
Locations on the Equator experience the quickest sunrises and sunsets because the sun moves nearly perpendicular to the horizon for most of the year. The Earth bulges slightly at the Equator, the diameter of the Earth is 12,750 kilometres. Because the Earth spins to the east, spacecraft must launch to the east to take advantage of this Earth-boost of speed, seasons result from the yearly revolution of the Earth around the Sun and the tilt of the Earths axis relative to the plane of revolution. During the year the northern and southern hemispheres are inclined toward or away from the sun according to Earths position in its orbit, the hemisphere inclined toward the sun receives more sunlight and is in summer, while the other hemisphere receives less sun and is in winter. At the equinoxes, the Earths axis is not tilted toward the sun, instead it is perpendicular to the sun meaning that the day is about 12 hours long, as is the night, across the whole of the Earth. Near the Equator there is distinction between summer, autumn, or spring.
The temperatures are usually high year-round—with the exception of high mountains in South America, the temperature at the Equator can plummet during rainstorms. In many tropical regions people identify two seasons, the wet season and the dry season, but many places close to the Equator are on the oceans or rainy throughout the year, the seasons can vary depending on elevation and proximity to an ocean. The Equator lies mostly on the three largest oceans, the Pacific Ocean, the Atlantic Ocean, and the Indian Ocean. The highest point on the Equator is at the elevation of 4,690 metres, at 0°0′0″N 77°59′31″W and this is slightly above the snow line, and is the only place on the Equator where snow lies on the ground. At the Equator the snow line is around 1,000 metres lower than on Mount Everest, the Equator traverses the land of 11 countries, it passes through two island nations, though without making a landfall in either. Starting at the Prime Meridian and heading eastwards, the Equator passes through, Despite its name, its island of Annobón is 155 km south of the Equator, and the rest of the country lies to the north
Mean sea level is an average level of the surface of one or more of Earths oceans from which heights such as elevations may be measured. A common and relatively straightforward mean sea-level standard is the midpoint between a low and mean high tide at a particular location. Sea levels can be affected by factors and are known to have varied greatly over geological time scales. The careful measurement of variations in MSL can offer insights into ongoing climate change, the term above sea level generally refers to above mean sea level. Precise determination of a sea level is a difficult problem because of the many factors that affect sea level. Sea level varies quite a lot on several scales of time and this is because the sea is in constant motion, affected by the tides, atmospheric pressure, local gravitational differences, salinity and so forth. The easiest way this may be calculated is by selecting a location and calculating the mean sea level at that point, for example, a period of 19 years of hourly level observations may be averaged and used to determine the mean sea level at some measurement point.
One measures the values of MSL in respect to the land, hence a change in MSL can result from a real change in sea level, or from a change in the height of the land on which the tide gauge operates. In the UK, the Ordnance Datum is the sea level measured at Newlyn in Cornwall between 1915 and 1921. Prior to 1921, the datum was MSL at the Victoria Dock, in Hong Kong, mPD is a surveying term meaning metres above Principal Datum and refers to height of 1. 230m below the average sea level. In France, the Marégraphe in Marseilles measures continuously the sea level since 1883 and it is used for a part of continental Europe and main part of Africa as official sea level. Elsewhere in Europe vertical elevation references are made to the Amsterdam Peil elevation, satellite altimeters have been making precise measurements of sea level since the launch of TOPEX/Poseidon in 1992. A joint mission of NASA and CNES, TOPEX/Poseidon was followed by Jason-1 in 2001, height above mean sea level is the elevation or altitude of an object, relative to the average sea level datum.
It is used in aviation, where some heights are recorded and reported with respect to sea level, and in the atmospheric sciences. An alternative is to base height measurements on an ellipsoid of the entire Earth, in aviation, the ellipsoid known as World Geodetic System 84 is increasingly used to define heights, differences up to 100 metres exist between this ellipsoid height and mean tidal height. The alternative is to use a vertical datum such as NAVD88. When referring to geographic features such as mountains on a topographic map, the elevation of a mountain denotes the highest point or summit and is typically illustrated as a small circle on a topographic map with the AMSL height shown in metres, feet or both. In the rare case that a location is below sea level, for one such case, see Amsterdam Airport Schiphol
The midnight sun is a natural phenomenon that occurs in the summer months in places north of the Arctic Circle or south of the Antarctic Circle, when the sun remains visible at the local midnight. Around the summer solstice the sun is visible for the full 24 hours, the number of days per year with potential midnight sun increases the farther towards either pole one goes. A quarter of Finlands territory lies north of the Arctic Circle, in Svalbard, the northernmost inhabited region of Europe, there is no sunset from approximately 19 April to 23 August. The extreme sites are the poles, where the sun can be visible for half the year. The opposite phenomenon, polar night, occurs in winter, when the sun stays below the horizon throughout the day, since the axial tilt of the Earth is considerable, the sun does not set at high latitudes in local summer. The duration of sunlight increases from one day during the solstice at the polar circle, to several weeks only 100 km closer to the pole. At extreme latitudes, the sun is usually referred to as polar day.
At the poles themselves, the sun rises and sets only once each year, for example, Iceland is known for its midnight sun, even though most of it is slightly south of the Arctic Circle. For the same reasons, the period of sunlight at the poles is slightly longer than six months, even the northern extremities of Scotland experience twilight in the northern sky at around the summer solstice. Observers at heights appreciably above sea level can experience extended periods of midnight sun as a result of the dip of the horizon viewed from altitude, the term midnight sun refers to the consecutive 24-hour periods of sunlight experienced north of the Arctic Circle and south of the Antarctic Circle. Other phenomena are sometimes referred to as midnight sun, but they are caused by time zones, for instance, in Fairbanks, which is south of the Arctic Circle, the sun sets at 12,47 am at the summer solstice. This is because Fairbanks is 51 minutes ahead of its time zone. This means that solar culmination occurs at about 1,51 pm instead of at 12 noon, if a precise moment for the genuine midnight sun is required, the observers longitude, the local civil time and the equation of time must be taken into account.
The moment of the suns closest approach to the horizon coincides with its due north at the observers position. These two effects must be added, the equation of time must be added, a positive value on a given date means that the sun is running slightly ahead of its average position, so the value must be subtracted. The equation of time at that date is -2.0 minutes, the suns lowest elevation occurs 120 -103.2 +2.0 minutes after midnight, at 00.19 Central European Summer time. On other nearby dates the only thing different is the equation of time, the suns altitude remains within half a degree of the minimum of about 5 degrees for about 45 minutes either side of this time. The midnight sun is visible at the Arctic Circle from 12 June until 1 July and this period extends as one travels north, At Cape Nordkinn, the northernmost point of Continental Europe, the midnight sun lasts approximately from 14 May to 29 July
Noon is usually defined as 12 oclock in the daytime, as opposed to midnight. The term midday is used colloquially to refer to a period of time in the middle of the day. Solar noon is when the Sun transits the celestial meridian and is at its highest altitude in the sky. The local or clock time of solar noon depends on the longitude, the opposite of noon is midnight. In many cultures in the Northern Hemisphere, noon had ancient geographic associations with the direction south, remnants of the noon = south association are preserved in the words for noon in French and Italian, both of which refer to the southern parts of the respective countries. Modern Polish, Belarusian and Serbian go a step farther, with the words for noon meaning south, the word noon is derived from Latin nona hora, the ninth hour of the day, and is related to the liturgical term none. The Roman and Western European medieval monastic day began at 6,00 a. m. at the equinox by modern timekeeping, in English, the meaning of the word shifted to midday and the time gradually moved back to 12,00 local time.
The change began in the 12th century and was fixed by the 14th century, solar noon is the moment when the Sun transits the celestial meridian – roughly the time when it is highest above the horizon on that day. This is the origin of the ante meridiem and post meridiem as noted below. The sun is overhead at solar noon at the Equator on the equinoxes, at the Tropic of Cancer on the June solstice. The elapsed time from local solar noon of one day to the day is exactly 24 hours only four instances in any particular year. This occurs when the effects of Earth’s obliquity of ecliptic and its orbital speed around the Sun offset each other and these four days for the current epoch are centered about Feb 11, May 13, July 25 and Nov 3. It occurs at one particular line of Longitude each event. This line varies year to year since Earth’s true year is not a number of days. This event time and location varies due to Earth’s orbit being gravitationally perturbed by the planets and these four 24-hour days occur in both N and S hemispheres simultaneously.
The precise UTC times for four days mark when the opposite line of longitude 180 degrees away experiences precisely 24 hours from local midnight to local midnight the next day. Thus four varying great circles of Longitude define from year to year when a 24-hour day occurs, the two longest time spans from noon to noon occur twice each year around Jun 20 and around Dec 21. The shortest time spans occur twice each year around March 25, noon is commonly indicated by 12 p. m. and midnight by 12 a. m
The Antarctic is a polar region, specifically the region around the Earths South Pole, opposite the Arctic region around the North Pole. The Antarctic comprises in the sense the continent of Antarctica. The region covers some 20% of the Southern Hemisphere, of which 5. 5% is the area of the Antarctic continent itself. All of the land and ice shelves south of 60°S latitude are administrated under the Antarctic Treaty System, in a biogeographic sense, the Antarctic ecozone is one of eight ecozones of the Earths land surface. Most of the Antarctic region is situated south of 60°S latitude parallel, there are only two species of flowering plant, Antarctic hair grass and Antarctic pearlwort, but a range of mosses, liverworts and macrofungi. The first Antarctic land discovered was the island of South Georgia, the first human born in the Antarctic was Solveig Gunbjørg Jacobsen born on 8 October 1913 in Grytviken, South Georgia. However, the region is visited by more than 40,000 tourists annually, the definitive results of the conference was presented at the Antarctic Treaty states meeting in Uruguay in May 2010.
The Antarctic hosts the worlds largest protected area comprising 1.07 million km2, the South Georgia, because Antarctica surrounds the South Pole, it is theoretically located in all time zones. For practical purposes, time zones are based on territorial claims or the time zone of a stations owner country or supply base. Antarctic Circle History of Antarctica Krupnik, Michael A. Lang, smithsonian at the Poles, Contributions to International Polar Year Science