Climate change is a grim reality and sometimes it can feel like there is no hope for the future of the planet. But this interactive mapping tool may give you much-needed hope, as it shows places around the world where people are working to repair or conserve ecosystems.
The card is called Repair and was developed by Thomas Crowther, an ecologist at ETH Zurich. Crowther wanted to show people that while it is perfectly fair to be furious at the slow response to climate change, “without optimism, that outrage is going nowhere.”
So Restor shines lines about the ecological victories that show what changes can be made by people committed to making a difference, such as a non-profit organization planting trees in Brazil’s Atlantic Forest to restore an ecosystem that is now home is one of 170 bird species and prairies in Illinois that return after being extinct in the late 20th century.
As an open platform that emerged by Vox, Restor allows anyone to upload examples of ecological projects, as long as it involves the conservation of land in some way. So far, there have been more than 76,000 conservation uploads on Restor, showing how people everywhere are working tirelessly to preserve nature.
To use the interactive map, just go to the website. From there, you can click on the pens around the world that provide information on the landscapes and nature that people are working to save – and you can see Restor’s future predictions for the planet based on the restoration projects they are currently monitoring. It’s a lot of fun to explore the platform, to see what’s going on all over the planet, and to remind yourself when you feel depressed, that there’s a lot going on regarding the climate that you can actually feel very excited about. And, For what it’s worth, it is a very useful data tool to keep track of global conservation efforts.
“We never knew where all the conservation and recovery was taking place on our planet,” Crowther said. “This is the first time we can begin to visualize a global recovery movement.”
It’s no secret that we’re reaching a potential breaking point with climate change, and while it certainly does no good to pretend that these problems do not exist, Restor is a reminder that it also does not help to just give up, because things feel hopeless. Doing any small particle to help protect the planet can make a difference and if enough people help, it can ultimately make the difference.