One of the hopes of this world is that we are developing the tools to treat and understand the information beam we are receiving. Big data (what a vague phrasing for such a precise discipline) is now gathered on topics as diverse as rainfall, average honey consumption per capita, or total amounts of visits on the Plan A webpage (a particularly powerful computer was needed for this one).

Not only do we have the technology to count those things, but we also have the machine power to ordinate, organise and interpret that information. This is how we are getting more and more positive about the changes in climate. We can compare it against old records, and we can compare it globally.

What data is used?

Plan A is gathering data sets, lines and lines of information from a wide and varied range of scientific and research institutions. From these data points, our in-house tech magicians designed the tool to interpret and index that information.

Computer, Algorithm, Moore's law

We need some computer power to understand all the numbers we’re receiving now (Credit: Craig Dennis)

The indicators (180 of them so far) are gathered from various indices such as the famous Environmental Performance Index, Climate change performance Index or the World Risk Index.

This selection covers impacts and issues caused by climate change as well as activities, sectors and policies worsening or mitigating climate change. This way both the natural potential of our planet and the human decision aspect of our climate fate are properly taken into account.

To mention a few of the indicators we use, tree cover loss, biome protection, vegetation cover, CO2 emissions, environmental agreements, electricity access, solid waste generation, emergency response capabilities and even beef-driven deforestation.

We need a command centre for climate action. This is Plan A (Credit: Patryk Grądys)

We have created a list of high priority countries that, when combined with research provides us with a theme-by-theme urgency roster and a hierarchy of sub-themes of climate action that should be treated as fast as possible.

This is not just to say that some subjects are more important than others. The point is that climate action needs to be organised, systematised and informed by data. It’s very hard for humans to fathom more than 4 variables at a time. So imagine a machine as complex as planet Earth. If we are able to sequence the problem, we can approach each issue with action that lives within a greater solution framework, we can make sense of each and propose a global solution.

6 themes – 1 fight

Plan A has organised the fight against climate change around six themes that cover both all the aspects of our planet, and our levees of action as humans. These are oceans, forests, wildlife, sustainable energy, sustainable living and waste management.

Read also: The Plan A Infographics

With these easily relatable topics, we are able to break down the cluster of problems that is climate change into simpler, campaign-sized fundraising and actionable change.

no PLan B, environmentalism, pollution, earth day, world environment day

We’re on the same page here (Credit: Takver)

This method allows us to divide and conquer climate change, whilst making change so much more accessible than preaching for a radical change of everything, now, because death, and with no further ado.

Once a campaign topic and a place are determined, Plan A curates the most adapted and resilient organisation that operates within these parameters.

Invest in the environment

Honestly, it’s hard to imagine a better investment for yourself, your future and your future’s future than to invest in your own planet. This investment includes survival of mankind, provision for food and water for your children, diversity of life and landscape. As a bonus, nature will even throw in the cures for 99% of known illnesses and protection from space radiation.

Then again, the returns might not come in the form of a paper rectangle or metal coin that represent value. Could this be the problem? Surely it doesn’t make much sense to prefer these to the sight of wild buffaloes in Europe?

This planet is the playground on which all that we do happens. Even the economiest of the economists can only recognise that without free bees there won’t be any apple to keep a doctor away.

Moving fast and acting precisely are the keys to this fight. Data allows us to do exactly that. If you can make sense of it. The recent data just came in from NASA’s myriads of satellites, and they confirmed – if there was a need for confirmation – that our timeline is tight.

Act now, with Plan A. Because there is no plan B, better be sure about where we’re going.

Questions: How does plan A choose its themes and how do we orient our campaigns? What does data-driven mean? What kind of data do we use?