Emerald Isle: Ireland from Space

Date: 16 March 2012 Time: 05:57 PM ET
The lush green of the Emerald Isle, Ireland, is clear in this image taken by NASA’s Terra satellite.

It’s called the ‘Emerald Isle’ for good reason: Ireland’s landscape, as seen in a NASA satellite image, is covered in lush green grasses and of course, shamrocks.

Ireland’s greeness wouldn’t be expected given it’s location: It sits between 51.5 and 55.5 degrees north latitude, the same latitude range as the much chillier and snowier Newfoundland and Labrador in Canada. But Ireland benefits from the influence of the ocean current known as the North Atlantic Drift, which extends the warm waters of the Gulf Stream northward and gives Eire its mild climate . The island’s average temperature in January is a relatively balmy 45 degrees Fahrenheit (7 degrees Celsius). Summers are also mild.

Ireland sees precipitation that ranges from about 31 inches (78.5 centimeters) around Dublin to 118 inches (300 cm) along the west coast. All that rain and the mild temperatures are, naturally, good for vegetation.

The island’s greeness is evident in this photo taken by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Terra satellite on May 2, 2007

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One Response to Emerald Isle: Ireland from Space

  1. Love, love, love. Thank you, Jean.

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