Making Greenhouse Gases Visible

Antony Turner talk

Antony Turner BWPeter’s story is the most important story in the world. Antony wants to add pictures, which help stories come alive.

The atmosphere is an ocean of air, weighing 5,140 trillion tonnes. Carbon dioxide and other gases are invisible. His work involves turning numbers into pictures, and mass (tonnes of carbon dioxide) into volume, displayed as spheres and cubes in context.

Argh! A blog post can’t possibly convey the pictures and videos he’s showing. We are emitting 80 million tonnes of CO2 every day, equivalent to filling the UN skyscraper in New York 7 times over in 4 seconds, or a sheet of 80gsm paper wrapping the planet. A tonne of potatoes next to a cube of emissions. An hour’s worth of TV production as columns of CO2. The annual carbon footprints of public buildings in Exeter, displayed on Google Earth, colour-coded by totals, height dependent on building efficiency – wow!

PS. Get the visualisation of public buildings here. Get Google Earth here. The Met Office column clearly shows the irony of using supercomputers to research climate change.