WhatILove.org

New York. Paris. Bacon.

CityLab 2013
Exploring urban solutions to global challenges
See full coverage

From what I recall, this is a persuasive tactic often most effective on small children: If you want to convey an abstract idea (sharing is good, stealing is bad) it's often helpful to frame it in immediate, concrete, emotional examples. For example: How would you feel if someone stole your [insert favorite toy here]?

In the debate over climate change (a really abstract concept), the world is more or less full of figurative toddlers. Which is why this interactive campaign from Al Gore's Climate Reality Project might actually be effective. The site, designed by digital production company B-Reel, invites people to select the things they love from a pretty comprehensive list that includes whole cities alongside everyday pleasures like cookies, coffee, and jogging.

The platform then constructs a "canvas" of the things you love...

...and then proceeds to tell you how climate change will spoil every one of them:

The project, which offers some fearful factoids on a dozen great cities (not to mention awesome things inside of them), is a reminder that municipal conversations around what to do about climate change all turn first on the task of convincing people to take notice. Gore, scheduled to speak on this very topic in New York next week at The Atlantic's CityLab summit on local-level innovation, argues in creating this project that we need to go beyond talk about climate change and dollar signs to imagining instead "who we would be and how we would live our lives without what matters most.”

All screen grab images via WhatIlove.org.

About the Author

Most Popular

  1. Design

    A History of the American Public Library

    A visual exploration of how a critical piece of social infrastructure came to be.

  2. Equity

    Berlin Builds an Arsenal of Ideas to Stage a Housing Revolution

    The proposals might seem radical—from banning huge corporate landlords to freezing rents for five years—but polls show the public is ready for something dramatic.

  3. A photo of a design maquette for the Obama Presidential Center planned for Jackson Park and designed by Tod Williams Billie Tsien Architects with Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates.
    Design

    Why the Case Against the Obama Presidential Center Is So Important

    A judge has ruled that a lawsuit brought by Chicago preservationists can proceed, dealing a blow to Barack Obama's plans to build his library in Jackson Park.

  4. Maps

    Mapping the Growing Gap Between Job Seekers and Employers

    Mapping job openings with available employees in major U.S. cities reveals a striking spatial mismatch, according to a new Urban Institute report.

  5. Design

    The Curious Politics of a Montreal Mega-Mall

    The car-dependent suburb it’ll be built in wants to greenlight Royalmount against the city government’s wishes but it needs them to pay for the public infrastructure.