Data Vis Dispatch, May 21

The best of last week’s big and small data visualizations

Welcome back to the 143rd edition of Data Vis Dispatch! Every week, we publish a collection of the best small and large data visualizations we find, especially from news organizations — to celebrate data journalism, data visualization, simple charts, elaborate maps, and their creators.

Recurring topics this week include groundwater, habitat, and how humans affect nature.

Two interactive map tools look at history on different scales — one of them offering over a million maps!

Petr Pridal: “Preview of – the most comprehensive interactive map of history, which is launched today by @OldMapsOnline & @MapTiler teams at David Rumsey Map Center @DavidRumseyMaps at @Stanford university,” May 15 (Tweet, Website)
Sur le Champ: “Quelle place occupent les rues dont le nom a une origine historique militaire à Paris ? Pour rendre ça visuel, j’ai demandé à un ami informaticien de me coder un petit outil. Je vous présente ici les résultats (je ferai un fil méthode et un autre utilisation de l’outil),” May 19 (Twitter Thread, Website)

Another map topic this week was groundwater pollution:

Datadista: Under the Surface, May 15
Le Monde: 300 Contaminants dans nos Nappes, May 15

In Ukraine, Russian troops have again crossed the northeastern border and opened a new front line near Kharkiv:

The New York Times: Mapping Russia’s Sudden Push Across Ukrainian Lines, May 15
The Wall Street Journal: ‘The City Needs to Live.’ Inside Ukraine’s Second City as Russia Closes In, May 19
Neue Zürcher Zeitung: Russlands Feldzug schreitet voran. Das bedeuten die jüngsten Gebietsgewinne, May 14

Other visualizations on war and conflict illustrate Palestinian life under Israeli occupation and potential battlegrounds in a conflict over Taiwan:

Al Jazeera: Palestinian life under Israeli occupation, May 15
Financial Times: Satellite images show Gazans forced to cram into Al-Mawasi tent city, May 15
Financial Times: The battlegrounds that could decide a US-China war over Taiwan, May 20

Let’s cut to a longer segment about the environment (and how it’s connected with everything else). We’ll start with CO₂ emissions:

Denis Vannier: “Une carte réalisée pour @Splannenquetes, qui publie aujourd’hui un dossier sur le coût humain des pollutions industrielles dans l’agglo nazairienne,” May 16 (Tweet, Map)
José Luengo-Cabrera: “Per capita Co2 Emissions & Income Data: @gcarbonproject, @worldbankdata & @univgroningen Data processed & provided by @OurWorldInData,” May 15 (Tweet)

Next up — how human behavior is changing natural landscapes:

The Wall Street Journal: Why Cocoa Farmers Are GPS Mapping Where Their Beans Are Grown, May 20
The Straits Times: Saving the Mekong: The arduous battle to sustain life along South-east Asia’s longest river, May 18

Have you ever heard of plant hardiness zones? Significant climate changes are already affecting even casual home gardening and agriculture:

National Public Radio: The USDA’s gardening zones shifted. This map shows you what’s changed in vivid detail, May 14

Wildfires aren’t just bad for the environment and the climate — they’re also bad for insurance companies:

Reuters: Rain helps stall wildfire near Canadian oil city, May 17
The New York Times: “As climate change produces more extreme weather, insurers are losing money around the U.S. even in states with low hurricane and wildfire danger. The result is insurers are raising premiums by as much as 50% or more or leaving entire states altogether,” May 16 (Tweet, Article)

Surprisingly, major cyberattacks tend to cause far less damage than solar storms:

The Economist: Unexpectedly, the cost of big cyber-attacks is falling, May 17
Bloomberg: Dazzling Solar Storm Tested Power Grids. Data Suggests More Are Coming, May 17 Multiple stunning visualizations

Elon Musk’s mega-salary, inflation in South Korea, and U.S. party politics dominated this week’s economic charts:

The Wall Street Journal: Musk Effect Drives Spread of Supersize CEO Pay Packages, May 20
SBS News:  띵동! 마부뉴스에 질문이 도착했습니다, May 16
The Wall Street Journal: Trump vs. Biden: How the Dow’s Performance Compares, May 17

The reopened debate over abortion in the United States is also having a significant effect on national politics. And since the Dobbs ruling, the number of laws restricting sex education in schools has increased significantly:

The New York Times: 17% of Voters Blame Biden for the End of Roe, May 15
CNN: State lawmakers have targeted restricting sex education since the Dobbs ruling, especially in states banning abortion, May 16

A U.K. general election is coming into view, with most analysts expecting one at the end of this year. That means the start of the poll trackers (Financial Times, BBC, The Economist, The Telegraph):

The Guardian: UK general election opinion poll tracker: Labour leading as election looms, May 20

Up next, housing and population:

Zeit Online: Wie viel Wohnfläche haben Sie im Vergleich?, May 15
Graphicacy: “We recently had the privilege of working with @PewStates team to redesign their Fiscal 50 platform to develop a robust data explorer with a responsive suite of charts with an enhanced state-level focus,” May 15 (Tweet, Article)
biwook: “One third of the population of Switzerland lives within 5 kilometers of the main train line crossing the country,” May 16 (Reddit Post)

Drunk driving deaths have fallen in the UK — but farm animals are still dying far too soon:

Works in Progress: How the war on drunk driving was won, May 17
funk: “6,8 Millionen Tonnen Fleisch wurden 2023 in Deutschland produziert. Unvorstellbar viel, aber deutlich weniger als im Jahr davor: 2022 waren es 7 Millionen Tonnen Fleisch. Und davor das Jahr 7,6 Millionen. Die Tendenz zeigt also: Die Fleischproduktion sinkt in Deutschland. Teilweise wurden die Lebensdauer und das Schlachtalter in Spannen angegeben. In diesen Fällen haben wir der Einfachheit halber immer die höhere Zahl gewählt […],” May 18 (Instagram Post)

Finally, a Facebook group that beats the police at finding stolen cars:

The Wall Street Journal: The Facebook Group Reuniting People With Their Stolen Cars, May 18

What else we found interesting

The Washington Post: D.C.’s secret garden, May 15
Diario Sur: Las secuoyas nos fascinan: estas son las más altas, grandes y espectaculares, May 17

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