Global Weirding is an interactive visualization of the most comprehensive scientific report on climate change ever made – the IPCC’s Fifth Assessment Report.
It tells the story of our future and what happens to our societies if we don’t act on climate change, and what it takes to get a place where we avoid the most dangerous consequences of climate change.
Pictured on a globe and timeline, the user can swipe through climate impacts described in the IPCC’s report from now until year 2100, witness temperature extremes and explore the benefits of reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
The term global weirding describes how the rise in average global temperature leads to all sorts of crazy things — from hotter heat spells to colder cold spells, more drought and intense flooding, as well as slow-onset changes such as ocean acidification and sea level rise. It also includes odd things such as jellyfish clogging up the pipes of nuclear power plants, forcing them to shut down.
The visualization is made by CICERO, a Norwegian climate change research institute and Bengler, a Norwegian media technology company.
“We wanted to take a fresh approach to the communication of climate science using the best available knowledge and the best available technology. We wanted to tell a story that avoids the clichés in climate communication, and we wanted to do it without pointing fingers”, said Tiina Ruohonen, project creator and manager at CICERO.
“Climate change will be the biggest issue for my children and I want to use my skills as a data communicator and developer to make their future less difficult”, said Even Westwang, partner at Bengler.
"In climate science, we usually see results as isolated numbers, text and technical graphs. Global Weirding has taken some of the huge store of knowledge contained in the IPCC report, and produced a visualization that is beautiful, informative, and retains the links back to the scientific results. It's both fun to play with and instructive, even for climate scientists", said Bjørn H. Samset, senior researcher at CICERO.
Global Weirding was launched Thursday 27 November to rave reviews on social media and the Norwegian media giant NRK. The news of the site peaked on Twitter, making us for a while more popular than Justin Bieber, and with over a thousand shares on Facebook over a short period of time.
A one-minute film explaining Global Weirding: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-dA4lGZtai4