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NASA App Shows Man’s Impact on the Planet

After two weeks of negotiations marked by an absence of consensus and clear political will, the COP19 concluded last Friday in Warsaw.

The United Nations Climate Change Conference in Warsaw (COP19) concludes without immediate commitments being made.

After two weeks of negotiations marked by an absence of consensus and clear political will, the COP19 concluded last Friday in Warsaw.

The two weeks of negotiations at the Warsaw Climate Change Conference have not led to the 195 signatories (194 states and one regional economic integration organisation) to the Framework Convention on Climate Change taking the desired steps towards a significant reduction in global emissions from fossil fuel combustion. Rather, it has served as a way of gaining time and postponing global agreement. Suffice to say, the word “commitment” has been replaced by “contribution”, namely that which each country must decide it is willing to make towards the goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Hence, it will be necessary to wait until the Lima summit in 2014 for a clearer idea of the political will of the signatories to the Convention, which they have promised to seal as a binding pact at the Paris summit of 2015.

Although disappointing, the Warsaw results were at least not a step backwards along the way to states taking individual and joint global responsibility for climate change. Nevertheless, the planet continues to suffer the consequences of further delays.

This NASA app does not require reports: the images it offers speak for themselves. The Climate Time Machine interactive tool has an image gallery called “State of Flux: Images of Change”, which shows at a click how Earth has changed over the last few decades. (Click on the image to access the application.)

State-of-flux