Google Earth Offers Footage of Refugee Camps

May 19, 2008 09:07 PM
by findingDulcinea Staff
Google Earth, a free application offering satellite coverage of the planet's surface, will now map worldwide refugee movement and humanitarian efforts

30-Second Summary

"All of the things that we do for refugees in the refugee camps around the world will become more visible," said U.N. Deputy High Commissioner for Refugees L. Craig Johnstone at the Geneva launch of Google Earth’s new software. Users will have access to images of refugees in areas such as Iraq, Darfur and Colombia.

Although not all areas of the world are available in high resolution, users can zoom in on refugee camps to get accurate images of the challenges and day-to-day struggles in these locations.

Originally created for use in video games, Google Earth has developed various partnerships with humanitarian and nonprofit organizations. The U.S Holocaust Memorial museum used Google Earth to display images of Darfur and the Jane Goodall Institute tracks chimps on its blog using the mapping software.

During the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, Google Earth made the destruction in New Orleans visible to the public. Google was criticized when it replaced post-Katrina images with older ones that showed the city unharmed. 

Police have also used the program to catch criminals, and the software was used (unsuccessfully, unfortunately) to look for missing explorer Steve Fosset.

Headline Link: 'Google Maps to Help Refugees'

Background: Google Earth a humanitarian and environmental tool

Related Topics: Other uses of Google Earth

Reference: Google Earth


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