Geographical

The monthly magazine of the Royal Geographical Society with the Institute of British Geographers. Covers a broad range of subjects related to geography in articles on people, places, cultures, adventure, responsible travel, history, science, and the envir

Articles from Vol. 77, No. 12, December

Averting the Disaster: With Kyoto Virtually Dead and Buried, a New Coalition of Governments Has Recently Begun to Focus on Technological Solutions. but Will They Be Enough?
The Kyoto Protocol, which commits signatories to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions to five per cent below 1990 levels by 2012 is currently the only significant international attempt to combat global warming. However, climatologists have estimated...
A View from the Top: Geo Photo: An Aerial View Offers a Whole New Perspective on Familiar Landscape and Scenes. This Month, Keith Wilson's Tips Will Help You to Make the Most of Your Time in the Air
Of all photography's myriad guises and applications, the practice of taking pictures of the Earth from the air has had the greatest value to the world's geographers. Photography was still in its infancy when French artist Felix Tournachon (better known...
Chris Edwards in Conversation with ... Francis Fukuyama Is an Author, Historian and Former Policy Planner for the US Department of State. His Most Recent Book, State Building, Concerns the Creation of New States and Their Governance
Is democracy the only option in terms of government? I guess as far as forms of government go for developed countries, it's difficult to see an alternative. I have art argument about modernisation that, beyond a level of capitalisation in the economy,...
Climate Change: Chloe Scott-Moncrieff Explores the Issues Surrounding the Biggest Environmental Challenge Facing the Planet
The greenhouse effect and its relation to global climate change didn't really impinge on the collective consciousness until the 1970s and '80s. but we've known about the effect since Victorian times. In 1827 French mathematician Joseph Fourier discovered...
Cold-Weather Footwear: Essential Gear: No-One Wants to Lose Their Toes to Frostbite, So It's Welcome News That Keeping Your Feet Warm Has Never Been Easier
At 6,194 metres, Denali, otherwise known as Mount McKinley, in Alaska isn't particularly high by international mountaineering standards. But it certainly is chilly. In fact, at times it's cold enough to crack the enamel on your teeth. During my four-week...
Engineers Become Geographers: A New Project Is Giving Engineering Students the Chance to Solve Real-World Problems Faced by Rural Ghanaians, an Example of Geography's Wide Remit, Says RGS-IBG Grants Officer Greg Dow
Many of the researchers who apply for funding from the Royal Geographical Society (with IBG) come from academic fields ostensibly outside geography. The work of zoologists, ecologists and those from other environmental sciences, not to mention that...
Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA)
When and how was the EIA founded? The EIA was founded in 1984 by friends Allan Thornton, Dave Currey and Jenny Lonsdale. Initially, they organised an ambitious trip aboard a rusty trawler to document Norwegian whaling that contributed to Norway's...
Explorer's Essentials: Benedict Allen, Broadcaster, Author and Explorer
1. A survival kit This would vary with the terrain. It must be small, so that you're not tempted to leave it behind in camp. It would contain waterproof matches, a spare compass, distress flares (desert), fishing hooks and line (jungle), a survival...
From Saint to Santa Claus: How Did a Charitable Local Bishop Become a Worldwide Symbol of Rampant Consumerism? Jeremy Seal Traces St Nicholas's Remarkable 1,650-Year Journey
In February 2005, the authorities in Demre, a shabby Anatolian town in southern Turkey, unceremoniously carted off the bronze statue that had stood in the main square. An idle bystander might have assumed that this act marked the Balkan-style fall...
Hepatitis: Medical Advice from Jason Gibbs, Head Pharmacist at Nomad Travel Stores and Health Clinics
There are five well-defined forms of viral hepatitis, imaginatively named A, B, C, D and E, as well as a few termed 'non A-E'. Although caused by different viruses and having different patterns of long-term illness, they all share a very similar pattern...
Iceberg Deposits Point to Ice Age Conveyor Failure
Analysis of particles carried and dumped into the Atlantic Ocean by icebergs during the last ice age has shown that the warm Gulf Stream probably switched off during that period. Dr Barbara Maher of the University of Lancaster mapped magnetic sediments...
In Pod We Trust: When It Comes to Ecologically Friendly Holidays, Snow Sports Have a Pretty Bad Rep. So When Geordie Torr Discovered a New Green Ski Destination in the Swiss Alps, It Was like a Breath of Fresh Mountain Air
Think of the cosiest place you've ever been. I reckon I can beat it. Right now, I'm lying on a sheepskin, beneath two 14-tog duvets. There's a wood-burning stove flickering away beside my bed. Outside, it's about -10[degrees]C and there's a 140km/h...
Into the Eye of a Hurricane or Three
EDITORIAL: In the USA, the summer of 2005 will be remembered for a string of environmental catastrophes--initiated by the powerful hurricanes Katrina, Rita and Wilma, which battered several of the southern coastal states, from Florida to Texas. The...
Last Look at Paradise
INDIA Twelve months ago, the Andaman and Nicobar Islands were devastated by the Boxing Day tsunami. At least 7,500 people died. For those that survived, life would never be the same: most lost their homes and livelihoods. On the first anniversary of...
Let It Snow: Weatherwatch with BBC Weather Forecaster Helen Willetts
When was our snowiest winter? Categorising winters in such terms isn't quite as straightforward as it might seem. Historical records are often sparse and depend upon on inconsistent observational practices; however, the early part of 1947 would...
Life in a Warmer World: Floods, Starvation, Landslides, Freezing Temperatures, Drought and Rising Sea Levels-The Effects of Climate Change Cannot Be Over-Estimated
There's no escaping it: the world is getting hotter. The question isn't whether it's going to affect the Earth itself, but by how much. Speaking at the launch of a scientific expedition to Cape Farewell in the Arctic last year, Sir David King, the...
On.the.Origins of a Theory: This Year Marks the 150th Anniversary of One of the Most Significant Intellectual Breakthroughs in the History of Science. Paul Spencer Sochaczewski and David Hallmark Travel to Sarawak, Malaysia, in Search of Its Origins
Several years ago, we visited the village of Santubong in Sarawak on the western coast of Malaysian Borneo. We were looking for the site of a beachside bungalow that, during the mid-19th century, belonged to the first governor of Sarawak, an Englishman...
Preparations for Invasion: World Climatic Chart (1943)
This chart is one of a pair compiled in the Naval Meteorological Branch of the Admiralty during the Second World War; the second sheet depicts a generalised July situation. Both charts were "prepared by the Hydrographic Department of the Admiralty,...
Quizzical: Running the Gamut from Swiss Army Knives to Nuclear Weapons, and Taking in Neutral Zones, Passports and the Global Positioning System along the Way, Chris Edwards Answers Your Questions
What connection does the Swiss Army Knife have to the Swiss Army? P Walsh, Kidderminster It depends on which Swiss Army Knife you mean. The original Swiss Army Knife was designed specifically for the needs of the local army, down to the inclusion...
Rough Guide to the Music of Balkan Gypsies; Rough Guide to Tito Puente; Rough Guide to the Music of Brazil: Rio De Janeiro
Rough Guide to the Music of Balkan Gypsies; Rough Guide to Tito Puente; Rough Guide to the Music of Brazil: Rio de Janeiro Rough Guides, various lengths, 11.99 [pounds sterling] Need the history, evolution and breadth of an entire musical cultural...
Sir Robert Schomburgk (1804-65): German Traveller Who Explored Northeastern South America with the Royal Geographical Society and Surveyed the Boundaries of British Guiana for Her Majesty's Government
What was his background? Robert Schomburgk, the son of a Protestant minister, was born at Freiburg in Saxony on 5 June 1804. He was mainly educated at home, and at the age of 14 was apprenticed to a businessman. However, his real interest was in...
Split's Personality: Although Tourists Have Been Rediscovering Croatia's Potential as a Holiday Destination for Several Years Now, Split Remains Something of a Hidden Gem. Jo Sargent Unearths One of Eastern Europe's Best-Kept Secrets Hidden among Some of the Adriatic Coast's Oldest Roman Ruins
Sprawling around the remarkably well-preserved remains of a Roman palace in southwestern Croatia, Split is one of Europe's oldest cities. It's also the country's second largest. Considered the cultural heart of Dalmatia, it has become the main gateway...
The 8,000-Metre Mountaineer: Earlier This Year, Alan Hinkes Completed One of the World's Most Demanding Feats of Endurance When He Became the First Briton to Climb All of the World's 8,000-Metre Peaks. Ben Winston Tracked Him Down in a North Yorkshire Pub
"I just realised where I was and thought: 'I'm on the third-highest mountain in the world on really dangerous steep ground, it's around half seven at night and about to get dark. It's blizzarding, so I'm not going to be able to find my way down, and...
The Alps Frozen in Time
During the 19th century, photography and mountaineering developed virtually side by side, and it was clear that sooner or later, they would be combined. One of the finest early exponents of Alpine photography was Vittorio Sella, whose work we feature...
The Berber Inheritance: Amar Grover Travels through the Breathtaking Scenery of Tunisia to Visit Some of the Last Remaining Traditional Berber Buildings
Today, the Berbers--North Africa's indigenes before the arrival of Arab tribes--area minority in the Maghreb. When the Arabs first encountered them, they were struck by their peculiar, almost hissing language. Ibn Khaldum, the 14th-century Moorish...
Time Travel: History Is Repeating Itself. after the Sun, Sea and Sand Mass Tourism of the 20th Century, Travel to Sites of Historical Interest, One of the Prime Motivations Behind the Grand Tour, Is Back in Vogue. and, as Tom Chesshyre Discovers, Today's Historical Tourists Are Often Just as Well Educated as Their Forebears
Between A-levels and university, I went with a few friends--all lads--on an island-hopping trip to Greece. It started with a couple of nights in Athens, followed by a week and a half of making it up as we went along, starting in the Cyclades islands....
Weighing the Evidence: Although Levels of Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide Have Increased Dramatically since the 19th Century, Some Still Doubt That Climate Change Is Man Made
This summer, researchers working north of the Arctic Circle were treated to balmy temperatures of 19[degrees]C. Many of the glaciers that stretched across the fjords of Svalbard a few decades ago have retreated to the point where they barely reach...

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