A new era of (data-based) climate transparency? The Climate Trace Project

Our datafication course addresses two topics that are currently discussed together in the media: Transparency and Sustainability. Recently, a consortium of non-profits, backed up by former US presidential candidate Al Gore, has published a database that allows to identify the top global CO2 hotspots. The project Climate Trace allows to trace global hotspots that produce CO2 emissions. The site allows also to select and compare various polluters. The project builds on the analysis of large amounts of data, machine learning technology, and additional forms of analysis. Representatives of the project suggest that from this transparency can come accountability as the project would allow policymakers to make better-informed decisions with regard to regulating emissions. After all, the project indicates that some polluters of the oil and gas sector have a much higher CO2 emission than they claim to have. The question obviously is: Does transparency readily translate into accountability? At the very least, the initiators of the project hope that the project will fuel collaboration between firms, regulators, and other actors to reduce CO2 emissions. Find out more about the project here.

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