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What would we learn and what could we save, if we had a 3D-scan of the entire earth?

Part 4 of the TED Radio Hour episode For All Eternity.

LIDAR technology is an innovation in archeology and ecology that has uncovered lost civilizations. But archeologist Chris Fisher realized it could help track and study the effects of climate change.

About Chris Fisher

Christopher T. Fisher is an archeologist, professor of anthropology at Colorado State University, and a National Geographic Explorer. He is also the founder and co-director of theEarth Archive, which is an initiative to scientifically document the entire surface of the Earth using 3D technologies before it changes forever. Since the early 1990s, his archeological research has centered on unraveling the complex set of social and environmental variables that resulted in the formation of the Late Postclassic (CE 1350-1520) Purépecha (Tarascan) Empire located in the Lake Pátzcuaro Basin, Michoacán, Mexico. During the course of this work in 2007, he and his team first documented an ancient city that they now call Angamuco.

Chris's work explores the connection between human societies and environments through a variety of archaeological and earth science methodologies including geoarchaeology, full coverage survey, excavation, and remote sensing. He earned his master's and doctorate in anthropology from the University of Wisconsin in Madison and his bachelor's in anthropology and archeology from Michigan State University.

About Andrew Gildersleeve

Andrew Gildersleeve is the chief executive officer of the Yakutat Tlingit Tribe in Yakutat, Alaska. A lawyer by training, he is a member of the Alaska, Hawai'i, and Washington state bar associations. He has most recently served the Tribe in the areas of tribal sovereignty, social justice, and the establishment of the tribal court. Andrew earned his bachelor's degree from Walla Walla College and doctorate of jurisprudence from Lewis & Clark Law School. He is also a founding member of the Yakutat Bay Foundation and a licensed mariner.

This segment of the TED Radio Hour was produced by Matthew Cloutier and James Delahoussaye edited by Sanaz Meshkinpour and Manoush Zomorodi. You can follow us on Twitter @TEDRadioHour and email us at TEDRadioHour@npr.org.


Copyright 2023 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Manoush Zomorodi
Manoush Zomorodi is the host of TED Radio Hour. She is a journalist, podcaster and media entrepreneur, and her work reflects her passion for investigating how technology and business are transforming humanity.
Matthew Cloutier
Matthew Cloutier is a producer for TED Radio Hour. While at the show, he has focused on stories about science and the natural world, ranging from operating Mars rovers to exploring Antarctica's hidden life. He has also pitched these kinds of episodes, including "Through The Looking Glass" and "Migration."
James Delahoussaye
Sanaz Meshkinpour