Source: Twitter/Eric Holthaus
Source: Twitter/Eric Holthaus

You have to hand it to Tesla electric vehicle owners; they’re a devoted bunch.

Mark Hanson – known on Twitter as @NetZeroMN – has made it a point to give his Tesla EV its very own climate change makeover to start a conversation about global warming.

It’s not visions of parched earth or extreme weather events, but a simple striped gradation flickering from blues at the top into reds towards towards the bottom.

Via a sign in his car, he elaborates on what the stripes represent.

“The wrap on this car is inspired by Professor Ed Hawkin’s ‘Warming Stripes’ graphic,” Hanson explains.

Prof. Ed Hawkins, a climate scientist working at the University of Reading, is known for his website Climate Lab Book which is a blog that offers an open platform through which to discuss climate science.

It’s also a great resource for a number of visualisations in the form of stripes and spirals that very effectively communicate the earth’s gradual decline towards warmer temperatures.

“This graphic shows each year’s average global temperature, between 1850-2017, as a colour, blue for cooler than average, red for warmer. The deeper the colour, the further from the average,” Hanson continues.

The stripes have also made it into the fashion wardrobes of weather forecasters in the form of ties, necklaces and mugs, in an effort to educate viewers about global warming.

The campaign, made viral on Twitter using the hashtag #MetsUnite, shows meteorologists and weather sporting the stripes in solidarity.

“The Earth faces big challenges now & in the near future. It’s important that I be a part of the change I wish to see,” tweeted Jeff Berardelli, founder of the campaign and weather anchor at US TV station WPEC.

As for Mark Hanson, he says that his Tesla has become a great starting point for discussing climate change and electric vehicles.

On his blog, Driven to Net Zero, he says, “I have had more conversations in the last 10 days than I have in a very long time.  At one of the events, I heard a woman using the ‘warming stripes’ design to show her daughter how the earth’s temperature has been changing.”

If you’re interested in using Prof. Hawkin’s warming stripes for your own project, you can access the visualisations made from data at various locations around the globe at Climate Lab Book.

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