WRI is working with Google to make our data related to climate change more approachable and interactive than ever.
Google’s Public Data Explorer is a new tool that makes large data sets easier to understand and explore. Users can reimagine data sets from a growing list of providers (like the U.S. Census, Eurostat, the World Bank, and, now, WRI’s Climate Analysis Indicators Tool - CAIT) as interactive charts and maps that illustrate data relationships and trends over time. These new data visualizations can be embedded in other websites and easily shared via email or social networks.
Turning Environmental Data into Policy Solutions
Accessible data to support decision-making has always been WRI’s calling card. With CAIT, WRI provides a comprehensive and comparable database of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions data and other climate-relevant indicators. Its recently-updated CAIT-U.S. data set, which includes estimates of GHG emissions from all major economic sectors for each U.S. state, is now part of the Public Data Explorer.
These data are important for answering policy-related questions regarding GHGs. As a first step towards implementing effective solutions to climate change, decision-makers need to know where GHG emissions come from and what drives them. For example:
Which states constituted the top 10 emitters in 2007?
How do per capita emissions compare across the U.S.?
From which sectors do most greenhouse gas emissions originate in the United States?
New Ways to Visualize Greenhouse Gas Emissions
The Google Public Data Explorer provides an opportunity to visualize answers to these and other questions in a way that is easy to see and understand. In some cases, the new Google platform also offers additional insights not available through CAIT, such as the moving time scale.
By pairing CAIT data with Google’s tools, there are new possibilities for people everywhere to take part in using sound data to tell stories that frame environmental problems and solutions. In the future, we hope to include additional data sets that can tell even more stories through Google’s visualization tools.
Suggestions for what you would like to see, or have a question about CAIT-U.S. data? Let us know here or join the conversation at http://groups.google.com/group/climate-analysis-indicators-tool.