For me a well-designed infographic is the absolute best way of quickly seeing facts and situations and putting them in context.  If you love looking at them, check out Fast Company’s Infographic of the Day.  They typically find the best stuff.  It is where I found the infographics I’m showcasing in this posting.  Another good source is Information is Beautiful.

The Gulf oil spill has given some of the most talented information graphics designers a powerful platform.  Here are three of the most masterful ones; there are links to the full sets of charts in each article.

Everything We Know About the BP Oil Spill.  Seriously , Everything. The designer created almost 20 separate sets of graphs covering the environmental impact, the impact on the fishing industry, the mess of fixes BP is trying out, the financial costs, and the impact on the tourism industry.

The Ongoing  Disaster of the Spill. This simpler infographic focuses on the costs of the spill, and ties the giant problem together.  The ugly takeaway?  A $500,000 safety valve–which BP actively resisted buying–could have prevented this.  And now the costs of the spill are estimated to be around $23 billion.  And that’s if everything continues as is, and the spill is actually capped in two months’ time.

Guide to the Oil Spill’s Impacts. This series of infographics deliver a stunningly rich chart of all the natural resources and businesses threatened by the disaster.  It details both the top-level impacts of the spill and the local ecosystems under threat.

Powerful Infographics Tell the Story of the Gulf Oil Spill

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