Putting the US in the EU ... bucking the Brexit trend!

What would it be like if the US was in the EU? I don't know how that would work out politically, but this map shows how it might look geographically (if the US was literally picked up and moved to Europe!)

My buddy Rick Langston is a bit of a map guy, and occasionally sends me cool examples. He recently sent me one he had seen on twitter (attributed to Randy Olson), that shows the continental United States overlaid on Europe at the geographically correct latitude. I was a bit surprised to see that the entire UK, and several other countries, were farther north than the US!

I'm not sure of any practical purpose for such a map, but I immediately knew I had to create one with SAS software! :)

First, I used Proc Gproject to clip the rectangular region of Europe out of the world map. Then I subset the continental US out of the world map, added an offset of 114 degrees to the longitude, and combined it with the Europe map. I plotted the combined map, and used a transparent color for the US.

I always try to make a few improvements when I imitate a graph, and here are the things I (hopefully) improved in this one:

  • First, and most importantly, I added a title explaining what's in the map - this way people can interpret the map on its own, without needing to read an article.
  • I also added lines of latitude, so you will have a point of reference, and you can easily verify that the two maps are indeed lined-up at the correct latitude.
  • The original map showed the country borders and also some internal lines (roads & rivers?), which was a little confusing. I only show the country borders in my map, to keep it simple.
  • The original map showed labels for the country names and major cities, but the text was very small, crowded, and difficult to read. In my map, I use html hover-text, so you can hover your mouse over the country areas and see the names of the countries (click the snapshot image below to see my interactive version with hover-text).


I have some friends that moved from Europe to NC, and I was curious to know whether they had moved to a higher or lower latitude, and how the weather differed. Eva moved from Budapest Hungary at latitude 47.5 (which lines up with Minnesota on the combined map) to central North Carolina at latitude 35.8 -- she says that Budapest has cooler winters and drier summers (hot & dry afternoons, but very comfy evenings). Eniko moved here from Cluj Romania at latitude 46.8 - she says Cluj is a little farther south than Budapest, but higher elevation, thus cooler.

I'm sure they're both enjoying the 90-degree North Carolina summers, where we have expressions like "It's not the heat, it's the humidity!" ;-)

Here's a picture of Eva, getting used to the NC weather at the beach ...

This content was reposted from the SAS Learning Post. Go there to read the original.

Robert Allison, The Graph Guy!, SAS

Robert Allison has worked at SAS for more than 20 years and is perhaps the foremost expert in creating custom graphs using SAS/GRAPH. His educational background is in computer science, and he holds a BS, MS, and PhD from North Carolina State University. He is the author of several conference papers, has won a few graphic competitions, and has written a book calledSAS/GRAPH: Beyond the Basics.

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Re: US & EU
  • 7/31/2016 9:13:16 PM

@Broadway: I think you misunderstand me.  That wasn't criticism.

You said: "Silver lining?"

I said: "Sounds like the gold standard"


Re: US & EU
  • 7/30/2016 9:51:43 PM

I think ultimately we all have to realize that politicians will not save our country. Or any country. Those kind of leaders don't even come once every generations. It's more like once every 2-3 generations.

Re: US & EU
  • 7/29/2016 1:49:48 PM

broadway The sad thing is its our country, and our future, we need strong leadership not drama!

Re: US & EU
  • 7/28/2016 11:06:08 PM

Maryam, lol! The strangest thing is that all these politicians already were in office right?! It's like they were board, didn't have a real election to campaign for, so they invented one.

Re: US & EU
  • 7/28/2016 3:15:35 PM

Broadway You aren't suggesting politicians unleashed unecessary hysteria to win an elections, oh thats not happening here at all!:)

Re: US & EU
  • 7/26/2016 9:42:37 PM

Sorry, I wracked my brain for something better. Anything. And unfortunately, I came up blank. While I'm here, I must say how quiet the whole Brexit story has gone in the US, with the GOP and Dem conventions.

Re: US & EU
  • 7/26/2016 3:03:33 PM

@Broadway: Sounds like the gold standard of cloud puns to me.

Re: US & EU
  • 7/25/2016 7:48:36 PM

Silver lining? Or is that one too easy?

Re: Wait... it doesn't all line up neatly?
  • 7/25/2016 11:22:18 AM

@kq4ym:  Is it that bad in your neck of the woods?  The attitude I've noticed among the people who live there during hurricane season is "Wake me if it's a category 3."

Re: US & EU
  • 7/25/2016 11:21:13 AM

> Joe, you make an excellent, the sky isn't falling point.

Now if only I could come up with the perfect cloud-computing pun to go with that observation.  ;)

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