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    July 01, 2021 | 8:00 AM

    6 Interactive Tools to Better Understand the Climate Crisis

    The climate crisis is capital B big and getting your head around all the causes, effects, and solutions can be a real challenge. Even for those who’ve spent years engaging with the issue.

    Fortunately there are many interactive tools available online to help us connect seemingly unrelated dots, visualize the abstract, and even foresee the future as science today predicts it.

    These online experiences can paint a clearer picture of our changing climate and the solutions at hand. So here are a few we’ve found helpful!


    First up in our list is En-ROADS, a simulation that gives you the chance to design your own policy scenarios to limit carbon emissions, and thus, future global warming. You can try your own experiments and assumptions and get feedback on the likely impacts in real time.

    Created by Climate Interactive in collaboration with MIT, En-ROADS has been used by everyone from individuals to small community groups, to US Congress and the UN secretary-general’s office.


    The world extracts a stunning amount of coal, oil, and gas every day. Now, thanks to the Guardian’s Fossil Fuel Interactive, you can get an idea of just how much.

    Additionally, the tool shares thought-provoking insights like the amount of fossil fuels that’s been extracted during your lifetime, and at what age you might see the world reach different climate thresholds.


    NASA’s Climate Time Machine provides a satellite look at our emissions and the rise in temperatures they’ve caused. Additionally, it provides a sobering look at some potential impacts of global warming.

    See below, for example, a capture of the simulator’s interactive global temperature and sea level maps.

    Earth radar


    (Source: NASA)


    Public opinion plays an immense role in the climate crisis and how we act to confront this threat and avoid the worst – or not.

    That’s what makes visualizations from the Yale Program on Climate Change Communication both so fascinating and so important. Check out the Explore Climate Change in the American Mind tool, for example, to see the diversity of Americans’ views on climate change.


    Ever wanted to see know the climate crisis is impacting your country? What’s more, depicted in state-of-the-art 3D graphs?

    If so, The New York Times has got you covered. Enter your country and scroll through the story to learn what challenges you and the world face — today, and as well as in coming decades.


    Global Footprint Network’s Footprint Calculator is a must-try exercise for anyone who wants to know their unique role in the climate crisis and in the greater sustainability challenge the world faces today.

    Specifically, the tool calculates how many planets humanity would need if everybody lived the same lifestyle as you. The number surprised us, and it might surprise you, too.


    These tools make clearer than ever what we already knew: that our climate is in crisis, and the time to work toward a healthy sustainable future is now.

    If you’re ready to take action, join our activist email list today! We’ll keep you posted on the latest developments in climate policy and what you can do to help solve the climate crisis.


    Before You Go

    At Climate Reality, we work hard to create high-quality educational content like blogs, e-books, videos, and more to empower people all over the world to fight for climate solutions and stand together to drive the change we need. We are a nonprofit organization that believes there is hope in unity, and that together, we can build a safe, sustainable future.

    But we can't do it without your help.

    If you enjoyed what you’ve just read and would like to see more, please consider making a generous gift to support our ongoing work to fight climate denial and support solutions.

    The Climate Reality Project