NASA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY NASA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Panama Canal, from space. North is at upper right. Clouds (white) are seen over the narrow Isthmus of Panama (green), separating the Pacific Ocean (at bottom centre, blue) from the Caribbean Sea (top, blue). The dark green area (down centre) is the Canal Zone, an ecologically sensitive rainforest area surrounding the thin blue line of the Panama Canal. The rainforest helps control erosion and siltation. This 80-kilometre-long canal was dug by the USA, and completed in 1914. A major shipping route, it uses a series of locks and man-made lakes to raise ships across the continental divide. Photographed from the International Space Station on 20 January 2003.
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