Translate Climate

I would like to share an awareness raising and social media initiative on climate change that I have been involved with over the last few weeks. We launched yesterday and it is getting very exciting.

At the time of the 2009 conference in Copenhagen the organisation I work for was looking for a way to illustrate the complexities of climate change. We came up with a first version of the Climate Building Illustration.

After comments from people around the world, the illustration evolved. In a next step we started to translate the illustration in an effort to reach more people and increase awareness raising.

All of this resulted in Translate Climate: a wiki-based social media initiative that combines illustrating climate change with translating it. We launched only yesterday and already had some amazing feedback. We started with ten illustrations and translations. In the course of a day we had four new translations, that we will develop into illustrations. And in the course of a day we had 32 people joining the project. I am very curious to see how this will develop especially that we are getting closer to the Durban climate negotiations.

Please have a look, join, and translate. Most importantly, feel free to use these translations for your own training and awareness raising purposes. If you could spread the news via your own networks, that would be great to.

We are also on twitter: @climate_diplo and run a climate change online community:

Here is the full description of the project:


While the world meets in Durban at the end of November to negotiate climate change, some important questions come to mind: Are we really speaking the same language when it comes to climate change? How can we understand the complexities of climate change? Can illustrations help?

Diplo’s Translate Climate initiative combines illustrating and translating climate change with our Climate Building Illustration. So far, we have illustrations in Chinese, German, English, Indonesian (Bahasa), Italian, Russian, Mongolian, Serbian, Spanish and Swedish.

You can start translating now by joining the wiki and creating a new page for a translation into your language. We will provide a form, and all you have to do is start filling in the blanks. Don’t worry if you are unsure about how to translate a certain word. You can leave the field blank or add a question mark; others will be able to help. Translate Climate is a collective effort.

Once you and your community are satisfied with the translation, we will create a Climate Building Illustration in your language and will make it available under a creative commons license for free use for awareness raising and educational purposes. You may also create the 2012 Calendar!

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