If you were looking for a nice place to settle down in the desert, your short list of requirements might look something like this:
1. Access to a reliable water supply.
2. See number one.
Lighting up the western coast of the Iberian Peninsula in the lower center of this image from November of 2017 is the only European capital city to lie on the Atlantic coast - Lisbon, Portugal. The intensity of its electric light output contrasts its legacy as one of the oldest cities in the world - older by centuries than either Paris or London, and even older than Rome.
We love our electric lights. In fact, if you want to get a good sense of the population density of any first-world city, just wait for the sun to go down. 8.7 million people inhabit Greater London, and as this image from January of 2017 clearly illustrates, they all own at least one high-intensity light bulb.
The population of Metropolitan Tokyo is similar to:
The combined populations of metro NYC and metro LA.
The population of the entire State of California.
The combined populations of Croatia, Guyana, Qatar, Norway, Switzerland, New Zealand, Mongolia, Kosovo, Estonia, Fiji, Uruguay, Iceland, and the Bahamas.
By the middle of the 19th century, this city on the northeastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea had grown into an overcrowded and unsanitary death trap. The entirety of its 187,000 inhabitants were packed into a 2-sq-km area enclosed by fortified medieval walls, which were now more effective at preventing air from circulating and incubating cholera bacteria than discouraging invaders. Life expectancy for a working class resident of Barcelona in 1843 was 23 years. Help.
Final construction of the International Space Station’s Cupola window, through which this and all other ISS Image’s of the Week are captured, took place in the Italian city of Turin. Turin is the bright spot in the lower right of this image from November of 2017. The larger city to its left is Milan.