Earth's Black Box

'Earth's Black Box" Aims To Hold Us Accountable In Case Of Climate Extinction

The concept of a black box on a plane or ship is pretty simple: it's a virtually indestructible box that will record everything that goes on. In the event of an emergency, it provides answers for investigators.

Now, a group of Australian scientists is creating something similar — but it's designed for all of planet Earth.

It'll be built in the Australian state of Tasmania.

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The Earth black box, known appropriately enough as...Earth's Black Box, will measure 33 feet long and be made of steel. Its creators say the materials used will be virtually indestructible, allowing it to survive virtually any doomsday scenario.

Why Tasmania?

Unsplash | Tim Hart

The creators of Earth's Black Box say they chose this location — an island off of southeastern Australia — for its 'geographical and political stability.'

In short, it's a fairly isolated location that's unlikely to see much political upheaval.

It'll collect data on climate change.

The info will include both raw data and new research on climate change. The algorithm will also include a metric called "Earth 500", which has 500 points of information that should give us an idea of our planet's health.

It should be self-sufficient.

Unsplash | Nuno Marques

In addition to being indestructible, the creators of Earth's Black Box say it'll be powered by solar panels that can pull data from the internet. The data collected will be stored on hard drives within the structure.

It will house some grim information.

Unsplash | Ian Battaglia

"Unless we dramatically transform our way of life, climate change and other man-made perils will cause our civilization to crash," wrote its creators.

The description goes on to say that Earth's Black Box will create "an unbiased account" of climate change.

"How the story ends is completely up to us."

Unsplash | Andrew "Donovan" Valdivia

This glimmer of hope is tempered with the quote, "One thing is certain, your actions, inactions and interactions are now being recorded."

It isn't just a black box; it's an accountability box for all of us.

It's set for completion soon.

Unsplash | Tolu Olubode

Its creators, a group of researchers from the University of Tasmania and artists from the Glue Society collective, say it'll be operational in early 2022.

Its records will begin with data from the 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Glasgow.

The conference didn't yield any significant breakthroughs.

While talks stretched on for days, nothing substantial came of the conference. This served as impetus for the black box — if we're unable to come to an agreement on climate change, perhaps we need something impartial to hold us accountable.

Climate change is an existential threat.

Unsplash | Markus Spiske

According to the United Nations' Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, our planet will be 1.5 Celsius, or 2.7 Fahrenheit, warmer by 2040. It might not sound like much, but the consequences of such an increase will be devastating.

It's a fascinating concept.

While it doesn't do anything to directly address climate change, Earth's Black Box is a unique idea: if we can't affect change ourselves, we can at least create a record of our downfall.

Let us know what you think in the comments.

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