What climate visualization changed your perspective?
I work in digital product design, so I'm always thinking about subtle ways to make complex interactions feel simple and intuitive. When I see a cool infographic or visualization, my heart beats a little faster.
That's why I was so impressed to see the New York Times recent article, The Stakes in the Paris Climate Deal, showing the importance of the United States' role in reducing carbon emissions. This interactive visualization makes it plain and clear how the US is the world's second largest carbon polluter (behind China, who quite unlike the US under Trump, has pledged to become the global leader in carbon reductions).
The data and scenarios for this powerful visualization were created using MIT's C-ROADS, a free, open source, award-winning computer simulator that helps people understand the long-term climate impacts of actions that reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
This software has been used extensively to help world leaders in government and industry rapidly test strategies for tackling climate change. It quite literally created consensus in Paris by helping everyone see the issues in the same way. It's a simple, straighforward tool to help make a complex problem more understandable.
ClimateX had a chance to sit down and chat with Travis Franck, who helped develop the tool, a few months ago. He's a great guy, who had some very interesting things to say about C-ROADS. To me, its inspiring to hear about someone who creates software that uses visualizations to truly changes people's perceptions about something so abstract and complex as climate change.
We'll share this video interview with Travis in the next couple weeks -- keep a look out for it!