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Kaid Benfield’s Blog

Guess what DOESN'T stay in Vegas: sprawl

Kaid Benfield

Posted March 9, 2012

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                satellite image of Las Vegas (by: NASA)

This amazing video takes only 38 seconds to tell a powerful story.  This is how NASA’s website sets it up:

“Las Vegas has undergone a massive growth spurt. This video shows the outward expansion of Las Vegas as a false-color time lapse of data from all 40 years of Landsat satellite data. The large red areas are actually green space, mostly golf courses and city parks. The images become a lot sharper around 1984, when new instrument designs improved the ability to resolve smaller parcels of land.”


View the video on NASA's site here.  You can also view high-res versions of this and several related videos here.

Move your cursor over the images for credit information.

Kaid Benfield writes (almost) daily about community, development, and the environment.  For more posts, see his blog's home page.  Please also visit NRDC’s sustainable communities video channel.

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Switchboard is the staff blog of the Natural Resources Defense Council, the nation’s most effective environmental group. For more about our work, including in-depth policy documents, action alerts and ways you can contribute, visit

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