Thursday, 6 January 2011

The Inconstant Air

Some time last year I came across a film published between 1957 and 1958 for the International Geophysical Year. The film was called 'The Inconstant Air' and was designed to be shown in classrooms and on television (16mm film and later video tapes). The company behind the production was McGraw-Hill, a major publisher of educational books. I think we have all probably used a McGraw-Hill book at some time in our lives.

The film describes how the Earths weather system works and how weather prediction is an evolving science and international experience. It also describes the Greenhouse Effect and speculates that increasing CO2 in the atmosphere would bring about climate change. Things have moved on since 1958 and the science has progressed. It should also be noted that the film refers to 'changing climate' and mentions 'rising temperatures' rather than 'global warming'.

I love the film because the animations used to explain Earths weather and climate system are near perfect. Not only are they aesthetically pleasing but they also explain the science so well. The combination of clear narrative and well planned animation works a treat.

The film can still be watched online at this URL:

Other films in the series are listed here:

No comments: