World fossil fuel use, carbon emissions & CCS

The opportunity to create a film to show the world’s CO2 emissions in real-time has been a long-held dream. We wondered if this was the moment when we were approached by WBCSD to make a film to show the necessity of Carbon Capture & Storage (CCS). Full info on film here.

Our film would have to clearly articulate the role of CCS in keeping global warming below 2° C threshold, as well as showing that renewables, though growing fast, are not growing as fast as global energy demand. We would also need an introduction to the scale of the problem in terms of global fossil fuel usage and of course carbon emissions!

It is not just world leaders and policymakers that need to know this story. It is all of us.

Antony Turner CEO, Carbon Visuals

From the beginning, this project had challenges, not least of which was a very tight timescale with an un-moveable deadline. But having the goal of showing our work to world leaders at the UN conference on climate change on 23rd September, provided us with both a familiar location on which to centre our story; plus a suitably high profile event to inspire extra effort.

We make no apologies for (once again) setting our film in New York, which has always provided a great location for imaginative scaling challenges - witness King Kong and Ghostbusters! New York also boasts an olympic swimming pool - Asphalt Green - useful for the oil flow section.

Having a genuine feel for the scale of fossil fuel use can focus the mind in a way a purely numerical argument cannot.

Adam Nieman Creative Director, Carbon Visuals

Our first task, after being approached in June, was a scoping phase to enable a thorough investigation of ideas, data and approaches. From internal brainstorming and creative workshop with the client, a storyboard gradually emerged. The task then switched to tightening and detailing the storyboard with a camera script before the animation team could begin their 3D magic. But at the same time, detailing of the complex 2D renewables and CCS sections was taking place - indeed caption and detail changes going on to the end!

We are proud of this project. It meets the brief and puts across the argument for CCS. But it also demonstrates, for the first time, the sheer scale of real-time use of fossil fuels and carbon emissions - an educational resource that we hope can be used well beyond the UN conference.

It is not just world leaders and policymakers that need to know this story. It is all of us: every person on the planet. ‘Making sense’ of this challenge requires not just an analytical brain and understanding of numbers, it requires a physical appreciation too.

We hope this short film, and the extract films of fossil fuel use and carbon emissions, will help. Please contact us if you would like high resolution versions of the film or extracts.