“Atlases open people’s eyes to what’s happening in the world.”- Juan José Valdés (National Geographic Geographer)
Yes they do.
Atlases give us a visual idea of our land and oceans and how they have moved and changed over time.
Unfortunately National Geographic just had to change their Atlases and not in a good way. The Arctic had to be remapped because it has melted and ultimately shrunken in size. It's the biggest change in the Atlas since the Soviet Union broke apart. Even Barack Obama acknowledged that this is a very rude awakening in his Clean Power Plan.
Arctic oceans heat up as a result of global warming. This causes ice caps to melt, oceans to rise, and hundreds of Arctic animals to be without a secure habitat.
It causes loss of life and damages Earth's stability on a really big scale, and now we can see it on maps.
Indeed, since the 1970s, ice caps have shrunk 12 percent per decade. And while the ice continues to shrink this figure continues to grow.
Geographer Juan José Valdés explains in this video.
"You hear reports all the time in the media about this. Until you have a hard-copy map in your hand, the message doesn't really hit home."- Juan José Valdés
It's true some people prefer to have hard-copy evidence of something in order to really believe it.
Perhaps the shrinking white space will be enough hard evidence to convince our leaders to act on climate change in Paris.
But in the mean time, contact your local leaders and ask them to take action on climate.