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Metro Manila by Laguna de Bay, and Interesting Features of Lake Taal, Philippines – November 3rd, 2010

13.8N 120.9E

November 3rd, 2010 Category: Image of the day, Lakes

Philippines - July 13th, 2010

Lake Taal

The extensive bright white area in the main orthorectified image is Metro Manila, situated between Manila Bay (left) and Laguna de Bay (right), on the island of Luzon in the Philippines.

Metro Manila, which is composed of sixteen cities including the city of Manila itself, is one of the most populous metropolitan areas in the world, with a population of 20 million people.

Laguna de Bay is the largest lake in the Philippines and the third largest freshwater lake in Southeast Asia. It has a stylized ‘W’ shape created by two peninsulas jutting out from the northern shore. Between these peninsulas, the middle lobe fills a large volcanic caldera. Laguna de Bay drains to Manila Bay via the Pasig River.

The detail image, on the other hand, focuses on Lake Taal, also visible to the south of Laguna de Bay in the full version of the main image. In the middle of the lake is Vulcano Island, which in turn is home to a smaller caldera lake known fittingly as Crater Lake.

Interestingly, Crater Lake holds the world record for being the largest lake on an island in a lake on an island. Within Crater Lake is another island, called Vulcan Point, which holds the record for being the largest island in a lake on an island in a lake on an island.

Philippines after Typhoons Chan Hom and Kujira

14.6N 120.9E

May 13th, 2009 Category: Snapshots

Philippines - May 12th, 2009

Philippines - May 12th, 2009

Within a week’s time, the northern Philippines were hit by two tropical cyclones, Kujira (01W) and Chan Hom (02W), that left behind more than 42 inches of rainfall to various areas, states NASA.

The image focuses on part of the island of Luzon. Manila, the capital of the Philippines, is located on Manila Bay (bottom), near the green Laguna de Bay Lake (bottom right).

The rivers in the image are brown from sediments dredged up by the heavy rainfall. These sediments can be seen flowing from rivermouths along the coastline, particularly in Manila Bay. To the north, the waters of the Gulf of Lingayen (top left) are clearer.

The storms displaced more than 400,000 people, the vast majority of whom have yet to return home, the National Disaster Coordinating Council (NDCC) reported.

The heavy rains and landslides from the latest tropical cyclone, Chan Hom, killed 43 people after making landfall on May 7th.

It also displaced more than 161,020 people in 51 towns, six cities and 11 provinces in Luzon, the country’s largest island.

Typhoon Kujira, which made landfall on May 2nd, caused 33 deaths and displaced 246,170, according to the NDCC.

The country’s Defence Secretary stated that many casualities occurred, despite early warnings about the typhoons, because many people in coastal areas did not have anywhere to go and tried simply to reinforce their wooden homes.

The state weather bureau said the storms, as well as a tropical depression that proceeded them, ushered in the early arrival of the annual typhoon season, which kills tens of thousands and causes widespread damage. About 20 typhoons strike the Philippines every year.

Mountains and Valleys of Luzon, Philippines

March 26th, 2009 Category: Snapshots

Philippines - March 22nd, 2009

Philippines - March 22nd, 2009

Luzon is the largest and most economically and politically important island in the Philippines and one of the three island groups in the country. As an island group, it includes the island of Luzon itself, plus the Batanes and Babuyan groups of islands to the north, and the main and outlying islands of Catanduanes, Marinduque, Masbate, Romblon, and Mindoro in the south.

Luzon’s area is 104,688 square kilometers, making it the world’s 15th largest island. It is the fifth most populous island in the world. Located on Luzon are the country’s capital, Manila, and its most populous city, Quezon City.

To the west of Luzon island is the South China Sea (Luzon Sea in Philippine territorial waters), to the east is the Philippine Sea, and to the north is Luzon Strait containing Babuyan Channel and Balintang Channel.

The main part of the island is roughly rectangular in shape and has the long Bicol Peninsula protruding to the southeast. The northern part of the island contains the largest mountain range in the country, the Cordillera Central, where Mount Pulag, the second highest mountain in the country at 2,922 meters, is located.

To the east of the Cordillera Central is the large Cagayan Valley. To the east of the valley rises the Sierra Madre mountain range, easily the longest range in the country, which snakes southwards into the central and southern part of the island. Between it and the Zambales Mountains to the west is the largest plain, the Central Luzon plain. This plain, approximately 11,000 kmĀ² in size, is the country’s largest producer of rice.

The largest lake in the country, and also the largest inland lake in Southeast Asia, the Laguna de Bay (Old Spanish, Lake of Bay town). Its size and green waters make it easily identifiable towards the southern part of the island.

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