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Volcanoes of Java and the Lesser Sunda Islands

8.5S 115.0E

September 29th, 2012 Category: Volcanoes

Indonesia – August 31st, 2012

The chain of islands on the right side of this image belong to the northern archipelago of the Lesser Sunda Islands, including Bali, Lombok, Sumbawa, Flores and Wetar. The archipelago is volcanic in origin, with a number of still active volcanoes, such as Mount Rinjani on Lombok. Others, however, such as Kelimutu, on Flores, are extinct.

Visible on the left side of the image, west of the Lesser Sunda Islands chain, is the island of Java. Formed mostly as the result of volcanic eruptions, Java is the 13th largest island in the world and the fifth largest island in Indonesia. A chain of volcanic mountains, easily visible in this image, forms an east-west spine along the island.

Environmental Threats to Lesser Sunda Islands

8.6S 121.0E

May 22nd, 2012 Category: Snapshots

Indonesia - May 20th, 2012

This image shows several of the Lesser Sunda Islands, a group of islands in the southern Maritime Southeast Asia, north of Australia. The three largest islands visible here are Sumba, Flores and Timor (lower half of image, from left to right). The islands are part of a volcanic arc, the Sunda Arc, formed by subduction along the Java Trench in the Java Sea.

Although most of the vegetation on these islands is dry forest there are patches of rainforest on these islands too, especially in lowland areas and along riverbanks. However, the ecosystem is threatened: more than half of the original vegetation of the islands has been cleared for planting of rice and other crops, for settlement and by consequent forest fires.

While many ecological problems affect both small islands and large landmasses, small islands suffer their particular problems and are highly exposed to external forces. Development pressures on small islands are increasing, although their effects are not always anticipated. Although Indonesia is richly endowed with natural resources, the resources of the small islands of Nusa Tenggara are limited and specialised; furthermore human resources in particular are limited.

Borneo, Sulawesi and Lesser Sunda Islands, Indonesia

1.8S 120.5E

November 30th, 2011 Category: Snapshots

Indonesia - November 25th, 2011

Indonesia, officially the Republic of Indonesia, is a country in Southeast Asia and Oceania. It is an archipelago comprising approximately 13,000 islands. Visible here are Borneo (left), Sulawesi (center) and the Lesser Sunda Islands (bottom).

Borneo is the third largest island in the world. It is divided among three countries: Brunei, Indonesia and Malaysia. Approximately 73% of the island is Indonesian territory.

Sulawesi is the world’s eleventh-largest island, covering an area of 174,600 km2 (67,413 sq mi). It has a distinctive shape, dominated by four large peninsulas (best observed in the full image): the Semenanjung Minahassa; the East Peninsula; the South Peninsula; and the South-east Peninsula. The central part of the island is ruggedly mountainous, such that the island’s peninsulas have traditionally been remote from each other, with better connections by sea than by road.

The Lesser Sunda Islands, or Nusa Tenggara, are a group of islands in the southern Maritime Southeast Asia, north of Australia. Together with the Greater Sunda Islands to the west they make up the Sunda Islands. The islands are part of a volcanic arc, the Sunda Arc, formed by subduction along the Java Trench in the Java Sea.

Sediments in King Sound, Australia, and Lesser Sunda Islands

9.8S 124.3E

September 1st, 2010 Category: Rivers, Sediments

Australia - August 30th, 2010

Sediments spilling out of the mouth of the Fitzroy River turn King Sound tan in color. The rest of the coastline of Western Australia visible to the northeast of the sound is also framed by sediments, although these appear less dense and greenish in color.

Several islands can be observed to the north. Most belong to the Indonesian province of East Nusa Tenggara, located in the eastern portion of the Lesser Sunda Islands, including West Timor. The provincial capital is Kupang, located on West Timor. The highest point is Mount Mutis of Timor Tengah Selatan, which is 2427 meters above sea level.

The province consists of about 550 islands, but is dominated by the three main islands of Flores, Sumba, and West Timor, the western half of the island of Timor. The eastern part of Timor is the independent country of East Timor. Other islands include Adonara, Alor, Komodo, Lembata, Menipo, Raijua, Rincah, Rote Island (the southernmost island in Indonesia), Savu, Semau, and Solor.

Indonesia’s Lesser Sunda Islands

8.5S 116.6E

August 3rd, 2009 Category: Snapshots, Volcanoes

Indonesia - July 2nd, 2009

Indonesia - July 2nd, 2009

From left to right, the largest Indonesian islands visible here are Java, Bali, Lombok, Sumbawa, Sumba and Flores. All except Java are part of the Lesser Sunda Islands, or Nusa Tenggara, group.

The island of Bali, surrounded by coral reefs, lies 3.2 km (2 mi) east of Java. East to west, the island is approximately 153 km (95 mi) wide and spans approximately 112 km (69 mi) north to south; its land area is 5,632 km². The highest point is Mount Agung at 3,142 m (10,308 feet) high, an active volcano.

Lombok, east of Bali, is roughly circular, with a “tail” to the southwest, about 70 km across and a total area of about 4,725 km² (1,825 sq mi).

Sumbawa has an area of 15,448 km² (three times the size of its western neighbor Lombok). It is a volcanic island, lying within the Pacific Ring of Fire, including the volcano Mount Tambor.

Finally, the island of Sumba has an area of 11,153 km². There is a dry season from May to November and a rainy season from December to April.

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