Arctic Ocean

Arctic Ocean – The ocean around the North Pole is the smallest and shallowest ocean in the world, the Arctic Ocean. It is surrounded by the northern parts of Eurasia and North America. The Arctic Ocean and its marginal (the Chukchi, East Siberian, Laptev, Kara, Barents, White, Greenland, Beaufort, Bering and Norwegian seas) seas are changing as the Arctic exhibits a strong response to global change.

Arctic Ocean may be the smallest of the Earth’s oceans having a little more than 1/6 of the area of the Indian Ocean, its area of 14.09 million square kilometers is five times larger than the largest sea, Mediterranean.

Arctic was derived from the Greek word, “Arktros” meaning bear.

Arctic Ocean

Artic Ocean

Origin

The geophysical data makes the tectonic history of the Arctic Basin in the Cenozoic Era be largely known. Aeromagnetic and seismic date shows that the Eurasia Basin was made by seafloor spreading along the axis of the Nansen-Gakkel Ridge. Understanding the origin of the Arctic Ocean’s basins and ridges is important for recreating the paleoclimatic evolution of the ocean and its relevance to global environmental changes.

The resolution determined by rates of deposition of Arctic Ocean’s sediments records the physical environment, climate and ecosystems on time scales. These were dons by getting samples and coring them. Out of the numerous sediment corings done, only four penetrated deeply enough to predate the onset of climatic conditions. The oldest record that at least part of the Arctic Ocean was warm and biologically even prior to 40 million years ago. No available seafloor cores however, have sampled sediments from the time within 35 to 3 million years ago.

Climate

The arctic is in a polar climate. Polar night, cold and stable conditions, and clear skies all characterize to winter. Its surface water temperature remain consistent near the freezing point of sea water. Although it consists salt water, its salinity is less than the other oceans. Freezing occurs only when the temperature reaches -1.8 °C.

Animal and Plant Life

Artic Ocean is home to whales, walruses, polar bears, and seals. The area having a fragile ecosystem has added to making these animals being endangered. There isn’t much plant life in this region but phytoplankton. These tiny marine plants, are the start of most marine food chains. In summer, when the days are longer, they can photosynthesize for a long time each day and they reproduce quickly. On the opposite, they struggle to get enough sunlight to survive during winter. There are classes of algae and small animals that live within and underneath the sea ice.

Natural Resources

Mineral and animal resources from Arctic Ocean provide utility and economic benefit to humans. This ocean contains substantial amounts of minerals, boreal forest, and marine life. 22% of the world’s oil and natural gas are estimated by the US Geological Survey to be located beneath the Arctic. It also holds large quantities of minerals, including phosphate, bauxite, iron ore, and nickel. These are mainly used in industrialized economies.

The mountainous areas and low population also mean that villages in the Arctic often are self suppliant on electricity through hydro power.

Asia Map | People, Geography, & Facts

Asia

Known as the largest and most populous continent on Earth is the continent of Asia. Located primarily in the Eastern and Northern Hemisphere, it is bordered by the Pacific Ocean, Indian Ocean, and the Arctic Ocean. Asia covers Earth’s total surface area by 71.n square miles and has the largest coastline at 39,022 miles as well. This is home to 4.5 billion people from about 50 countries.

There is no clear geographical separation between Europe and Asia, therefore, they are commonly called Eurasia. Only a historical and cultural construct stands as the border between the two. Given the land size, and the huge amount of people, diversity varies across regions with regard to ethnic groups, culture, economics and government systems.

Etymology

Greek civilization had “Asia” an original concept for an English name. It was originally just a name for the east bank of the Aegean Sea, a region recognized to the Hittites as Assuwa. The Greeks used the term “Asia” to refer to the territory known today as Anatolia. Although a number of theories have been published regarding the etymology of Asia, it still remains uncertain and can only be guessed. It could have been from the Aegean root “Asis” which means muddy and silty or Semitic root “Asu” meaning rising.

History

Asia’s history is collectively distinct from the different regions such as East Asia, South Asia and the Middle East linked by the interior mass of Eurasian steppe. The world’s earliest civilization was at the coastal periphery with each of the three regions around fertile river valleys. Mounted nomads had also long inhabited the steppe region. The northern part of Asia, Siberia, however, was inaccessible to nomads due to dense forests. The Caucasus, Himalaya, Karakum Desert and Gobi Desert took advantage of mountains and deserts to make the Centre and periphery hardly accessible to steppe horsemen.

Prehistoric cultures recorded two ages that had major impact on the history of Asia. Bronze Age which was validated by bronze artifacts dating back to 2100 BCE in Ban Chiang, Thailand, and Burma Bronze tools in Nyaunggan, Burma in 3500 – 500 BCE. Iron age saw the wide use of iron for tools, weaponry, and armor.

Geography

Asia is the largest continent on Earth covering 9% of its surface. The 62,800-kilometer coastline is the largest. Asia has 48 countries. 3 of which are Russia, Kazakhstan, and Turkey that have parts of their land in Europe. There are deserts, tropical rainforests and elevated mountains in this continent thus having a diverse geographic and climate.

This continent is so huge, it has subcontinents. It has the Himalayas which are the highest mountains in the world.

Climate

Different climates are experienced all throughout Asia. There is Aden, Yemen which is the driest place on Earth and Mawsynram, India as the wettest. Monsoons also frequent this region and the most active place for tropical cyclone lies by the Philippines and south of Japan.

Economy

In terms of continental economy, Asia has the largest by both GDP Nominal and PPP in the world. It has the fastest growing economic region. The prime from this region are China, Japan, India, South Korea, and Indonesia. Asia also holds domination in Global Office Locations with 68% of international firms have offices in Hong Kong.

According to Angus Maddison’s The World Economy; A Millenial Perspective, the world’s largest economy during 0 BCE and 1000 BCE was in India. China also has, for much of the recorded history, the largest and most cutting edge economy until British empire took over in the mid 19th century, In the late 20th century, Japan took lead for several decades being the largest economy in Asia. In 2010, China took over Japan and became the world’s second-largest economy.

Forecasts have been made regarding economic standings of Japan, India, and China. By 2020, it is assumed that India will overtake Japan in nominal GDP. Goldman Sachs also predicts that by 2027, China will stand as the leading economy in the world.

The fact that Asia is the largest continent of the world, it is abundant in natural resources – Fisheries, forestry, marine, and minerals. With the huge number of population in Asia, there is no doubt they are traditionally the strongest in terms of manufacturing. International companies have taken advantage of the cheap labor thus settled operations in most parts of Asia where high skilled manufacturers and fluent English speakers are. Offshore customer services or call centers of international firms are mainly found in India and the Philippines.

Demographics

One-third of the world’s land area is Asia and is home to about three-fifths of its population. This continent includes two of the most populous countries, China and India. China is also the second-highest achiever in the world based on HDI Improvement. The 10 most successful countries in furthering the human development of their people come from different regions and the list includes several Countries in East and South Asia and the Arab States. However, not all the countries on the list are not typically described as success stories. Only because of their high achievements in health and education, and in some cases even their unexceptional growth performance made them included. China, for example, enters solely through its growth performance.

Languages

Being home to more than 40 countries, it wouldn’t be surprising to have more than one language. Although most can speak English, no Asian country has just but one language. The Philippines for example, has more than 100 spoken languages, Indonesia with about 600 and so on.

Religion

The largest and the most populous continent has a wide variety of religions. Asia was the birthplace of several religions such as Buddhism, Confucianism, Islam, Christianity, Judaism, Shintoism, Hinduism, Sikhism, Taoism, and Zoroastrianism. Most of these traditional religions are still being practiced although new forms are persistently emerging.