How do you visualise climate change simply and evocatively? Well, you could knit it.
The Sea of Azov, between Ukraine and Russia, is never more than fourteen metres deep. Parts of the sea are shallow enough to wade across.
Thwaites Glacier, in West Antarctica, is roughly the size of Florida. This glacier alone contributes four percent of the global rise in sea levels, and if it melted completely oceans would be 65cm higher – hence its alternative name, the Doomsday Glacier.
An urban legend from the late 1980s claimed that Soviet scientists had drilled so far down they hit hell – and brought back an audio recording of the suffering souls. But it was actually Baron Blood.
Gruta Casa de Pedra in Brazil has the largest cave mouth in the world – it is higher than the Great Pyramid of Giza. But the largest cave chamber in the world is larger still.
By discharge volume, the Amazon and the Orinoco are the largest and fourth largest rivers in the world. The Casiquiare River in Venezuela connects them.
The summit of Chimborazo, a volcano in Ecuador, is two kilometres farther from the Earth’s centre than Mount Everest.
The sides of Kawa Ijen, a volcano in Indonesia, are wreathed in blue flame.
It is illegal to climb Gangkhar Puensum in Bhutan, so no-one has ever reached the top. It is the highest unclimbed mountain in the world.
According to Las Cabañuelas lore, you can predict the weather for the whole year based on the weather of each day in January.
What do the bicycle, Marmite, Mormonism, and Frankenstein have in common? A volcano in Indonesia.
On 17 February 1832 – at the bidding of Neptune, god of the sea – Charles Darwin was blindfolded, his face covered in paint and pitch, and he was dunked into a water bath. He had crossed the line for the first time.
In 1943 a new volcano arose in Hokkaido. The Japanese government managed to keep it a secret for several years.
In a few places around the world sand dunes make a sound like a sad tuba when you walk on them.
It’s theoretically possible to swim across North America from the Pacific to the Atlantic, thanks to a strange creek in north-west Wyoming.
Radiocarbon dating only works on organic material, so how do you accurately measure the last time rocks and sediment saw sunlight? Luminescence dating.