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Big Dilemmas Infographics

  • 2051
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  • Big Dilemma InfographicsInfographics to aid understand of the issues surrounding the Severn Barrage
  • Problem: The Severn Barrage is a proposed project to build a sustainable energy producing barrage across the Severn Estuary near Bristol. There have been several proposed barrages in this area over the years, but due to issues such as cost to build and the effect on local wildlife, none have been constructed.

    Working with Sustainable Energy students from Exeter University, we were challenged to produce information graphics to aid understanding of their findings from research into the Barrage. These would be presented at a conference in Exeter. We worked on a timeline of the history of the barrage, putting into context how long the debate has been going on.
  • Solution: We decided to produce the timeline as a circle as it was easier to show on screen and allowed us more freedom to place data onto it. We used major events that happened around the world through history, from 1920 to 2050, to put the time period into context and created pictograms we could place onto the timeline. These included events such as the Empire State building being completed and the Berlin Wall being knocked down.

    We also placed relevant information on the graphs to show the importance of the barrage. To emphasize the power generating potential, we plotted a history of non-renewable energy on the outside of the circle, with renewable energy placed on top, finally including the energy the barrage would produce on top of that. We offset this by placing the CO2 emissions produced on the inside of the circle to show the growing need for renewable energy sources.
  • As the information would be shown as a presentation first, we needed to break the timeline up into pieces to be shown as slides. We used 20 year gaps with the last 30 years of projected scenario as a slide of its own. The copy for each was rotated to be shown at the right angle when showing that piece of the timeline. Showing the timeline closer also allowed us to show the icons for the world events in better detail.
  • After producing the slides for the presentation showing 20 year gaps, we were invited to show our work at the European Centre for Environment and Human Health Launch. We put together a poster that could be shown with the entire history of the Barrage on it, and an animated rotating timeline to show it in motion. The poster would be printed A1 to allow the type to be read and the graphics to be seen in detail.
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