Earth Day 2022: Google Doodle shows impact of climate change around the world

Time-lapse graphics use Google Earth imagery to demonstrate damage to the environment

The retreat of a glacier at the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro shown on the Earth Day 2022 Google Doodle. Photo: Google
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For Earth Day 2022, Google has created a Google Doodle that addresses climate change.

The graphic uses time-lapse imagery generated from Google Earth to demonstrate the effect of climate change on the planet. The scenes are going to change throughout the day, showing the impact on different parts of the world.

At the time of writing, the images show the retreat of a glacier at the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, Africa. The images progress from 1986 to 2020, showing a gradually reduced area of snow at the top of the mountain.

The retreat of a glacier in Sermersooq, Greenland, shown on the Earth Day 2022 Google Doodle.

The changing scenes will include the retreat of a glacier in Sermersooq, Greenland; coral bleaching on Lizard Island in the Great Barrier Reef, Australia; and forests destroyed by bark beetle infestations owing to rising temperatures and severe drought in the Harz forests in Elend, Germany.

Coral bleaching on Lizard Island, Australia shown on the Earth Day 2022 Google Doodle.

"Acting now and together to live more sustainably is necessary to avoid the worst effects of climate change," reads a message from Google. "This Earth Day, learn how Google Earth Timelapse is being used in partnership with other technologies and programs to empower everyone to take climate action across our planet’s cities, oceans and forests."

The Doodles don't include any Google branding or music.

Using real-time imagery is a step in a different direction from Google, which typically uses illustrations to mark annual events with its Google Doodles.

The 2021 Earth Day Doodle featured an illustration of a growing tree that encouraged "everyone [to] plant the seed to a brighter future, one sapling at a time."

"The planet we call home continues to nurture life and inspire wonder. Our environment works hard to sustain us, which calls for us to return the favour," read Google's 2021 environmentally focused message. "Today’s video Doodle shows a variety of trees being planted within natural habitats, one of the many ways we can do our part to keep our Earth healthy for future generations.

"This Earth Day — and every day — we encourage everyone to find one small act they can do to restore our Earth. It’s bound to take root and blossom into something beautiful."

Earth Day around the world - in pictures

Updated: November 15, 2022, 3:56 AM