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Pontianak by Kapuas River Delta, Indonesia

-0.0N 109.3E

March 10th, 2012 Category: Rivers

Indonesia - January 4th, 2012

Visible as a small white area near the shores of the island of Borneo is Pontianak, the capital of the Indonesian province of West Kalimantan. It is located almost precisely on the equator, hence it is widely known as Kota Khatulistiwa (Equator City). As can be observed in this orthorectified wide-swath ASAR image, the land near the city is mostly flat, while some hills are visible to the north and northeast.

Pontianak is a medium-size industrial city that occupies an area of 107.82 km² in the delta of the Kapuas River. The Kapuas River  is a river in the Indonesian part of Borneo island, at the geographic center of Maritime Southeast Asia. At 1,143 kilometers (710 mi) in length, it is the longest river of Indonesia and one of the world’s longest island rivers. It originates in the Müller mountain range at the center of the island and flows west into the South China Sea creating an extended marshy delta.

Mahakam River Meandering Across East Kalimantan, Indonesia

0.4S 116.9E

February 23rd, 2010 Category: Rivers

Indonesia - January 25th, 2010

Indonesia - January 25th, 2010

The Mahakam River is in Indonesia. It flows 980 km from the district of Long Apari in the highlands of Borneo, to its mouth at the Makassar Strait. Here, it can be seen meandering across the province of East Kalimantan. It is the largest river in that region, with a catchment area of approximately 77,000 km2.

As the river flows eastward, it crosses a flat tropical lowland area surrounded by peat land. The land visible in this this orthorectified image is mostly flat, although some hills can be observed towards the left edge.

Makaham River and Delta in Borneo, Indonesia

0.5S 117.1E

January 18th, 2010 Category: Rivers

Indonesia - December 31st, 2009

Indonesia - December 31st, 2009

The Mahakam River appears as a black ribbon in this orthorectified image, meandering down from the highlands of Borneo, in Indonesia, towards the Makassar Strait. Along its course it passes the cities of Tenggarong (left) and Samarinda (right). Before spilling into the strait, it branches out into a fan-shaped delta along the coastline.

The Mahakam delta is a mixed fluvial-tidal dominated delta. The delta covers about 1800 km2, consisting of mangrove areas near the shore, Nypa swamps in the central areas, and lowland forest near the apex, corresponding to the first bifurcation, however, recent fishery development in this area has converted a vast area of mangrove into shrimp ponds (tambak).

The delta has three main distributaries system directed Northeast, Southeast and South. The area between distributaries consists of a series of tidal channels generally unconnected to the main distributaries. The distributary channels are narrow and rectilinear with the depth ranging from 8 to 15 m and distributary channel bifurcations appear every 10 to 15 km.

Mahakam River at Mouth in Makassar Strait

0.5S 117.1E

July 29th, 2009 Category: Rivers

Indonesia - July 12th, 2009

Indonesia - July 12th, 2009

The Mahakam River is the largest river in East Kalimantan, Indonesia, with a catchment area of about 77,000 km2 and a length of 980 km.

On its way from the highlands of Borneo to its mouth in Makassar Strait, the Mahakam passes by the city of Samarinda, the provincial capital of East Kalimantan.

The Mahakam originates in the Muller mountain ranges where it flows south-eastwards, meeting the River Kedang Pahu at the city of Muara Pahu. From there the river meanders eastward through the Mahakam lakes region, which represents an extremely flat tropical lowland area surrounded by peat land.

Further downstream, the Mahakam meets three other main tributaries (River Belayan, Kedang Kepala, and Kedang Rantau) and flows south-eastwards through the Mahakam delta distributaries, towards the Makassar Strait.

The land in this orthorectified image is mostly flat, with some rows of hills running vertically. Some plots used for agriculture can be seen on the delta by the rivermouth. Ecologically, the river is important as it hosts rare water birds and the Irrawaddy dolphin.

Sediments in Brunei Bay and Rajang Rivermouth

March 27th, 2009 Category: Rivers

Malaysia - March 22nd, 2009

Malaysia - March 22nd, 2009

A dense tan flow of sediments makes its way into the South China Sea from the mouth of the Rajang River in Sarawak, Malaysia. The river is located in northwest of Borneo and it originates in the Iran Mountains. The river flows approximately 563 km to the sea, making it the longest river in Malaysia.

Up the coast, sediments can also be seen on the northern shores of Brunei Bay, the gateway to Brunei and Borneo. It is located east of Bandar Seri Begawan.  It is a deeply indented bay with an area of about 250,000 ha, shared between Brunei Darussalam and the East Malaysian States of Sarawak and Sabah.

A chain of islands including the large Malaysian island of Labuan forms the boundary between the bay and the South China Sea. Freshwater flows into the bay via a labyrinth of interconnecting channels and waterways.

Most of the east and south shores of the bay are covered in extensive mangrove forests with associated mudflats and sandflats at the mouths of the major estuaries. The mangrove forests form a continuous, intact forest within Bruneian territory, but those within the adjacent Sarawak territory have been largely clear-felled to supply the wood-chip industry.

The major rivers entering the Brunei Estuary in the southwest are the Brunei, Limbang, Temburong, Bangar and Trusan. The Limbang and Temburong drain catchments which are predominantly primary rainforest, and carry high silt loads.

The smaller Brunei River receives the drainage from the city of Bandar Seri Begawan and its environment, and is therefore subject to considerable urban pollution. Several smaller rivers drain the extensive peat swamp forests of Temburong District. These carry very small silt loads, but are rich in peat and woody debris.

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