Together with Britain’s environment ministry and the country’s Meteorological Office, Google have created a new animated map that layers over their Google Earth program to illustrate the potential impact of global climate change over the next century.
The project is called Climate Change in Our World allows viewers to run a series of time lapse sequences to watch earth warm under a medium case scenario up to the year 2100.
BAnother animation, developed in conjunction with the British Antarctic Survey (BAS), shows the retreat of Antarctica’s ice caps since the 1950’s, with numerous factoids about climate change science, and its specific impact on the Antarctic.
“Climate change is redrawing the map of the world. Unless we act, its impacts will be felt everywhere, as sea levels rise, crops fail, extreme weather increases and more areas are at risk of drought and flooding," said British environment secretary Hilary Benn.
“This project shows people the reality of climate change using estimates of both the change in the average temperature where they live, and the impact it will have on people’s lives all over the world, including here in Britain. By helping people to understand what climate change means for them and for the world we can mobilize the commitment we need to avoid the worst effects by taking action now.”
While the animation for the Antarctic is in and of itself disheartening, watching the temperature increase across the world is nothing short of depressing. With colors shifting along the red spectrum to indicate a rise in heat, the North Pole positively glows with heat by the time 2100 is reached in the animation.
In addition to the animations on both, there are numerous fact windows to be brought up. The BAS layer shows numerous facts about the past decade in Antarctica, pinpointing dates when large chunks of ice simply broke off.
For the temperature layer though, the fact windows showcase just what the temperature rises have already done to our planet.
Google has been a leader in moving big business to a greener future, and thus the rest of the world. But they have also helped raise awareness through projects such as their Google Earth, and the many layers that they provide which bring much needed attention back to our planet.
Posted by Josh Hill.