Above is a comparison shot of Africa’s Lake Chad from both 1972 and 2007. Once the 6th largest lake in the world, it has since shrunk to less than 1/10 its original size in 35 years because of drought and human diversion.
Africa is only responsible for about 4 percent of the world’s CO2 emissions, but experts think that continent will suffer the most from the effects of climate change. To prove just how much has changed and raise awareness to prepare for the drastic problems that await, the U.N. just released a 400-page atlas with 300 before and after photos showing how global warming has completely transformed the landscape of Africa.
The rest of the photos highlight dwindling forests, poisoned lagoons, and parched lands that once looked green. These concrete photos provide a much-needed observable expression of the toll climate change has exacted on the planet in a very short time period.
“Atlas of Our Changing Environment” is available for $150 in paperback, or you can browse through it for free by downloading a version compatible with Google Earth.
— Ted Alvarez
Atlas of Our Changing Environment (United Nations Environment Programme)