No, this isn’t a scene from The Day After the Day After Tomorrow. It’s a swimming pool design ordered by British banking group HSBC, supposedly to increase awareness about the possible consequences of global warming. But far from portraying rising sea levels as a disaster of apocalyptic proportions, it suggests a strangely tranquil future where cities will be transformed into underwater amusement parks.

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The Mumbai branch of advertising agency Ogilvy & Mather created this giant ad for the HSBC’s global warming initiative, attaching an aerial photograph of New York City to the bottom of a swimming pool. It’s certainly an eye-catching way to advertise the bank’s interest in global warming, and the bank has made a point of investing in firms working to tackle the problem. But in terms of alerting the public to the consequences of global warming, it seems to miss the mark. We’ve already been exposed to plenty of images of rising sea levels and submerged cities. For the issue to truly hit home, people need to be made aware of how global warming will affect humanity, not just the relics we’ll leave beneath the water. This image makes me think that I might like to visit a version of Earth where you can swim above the cities, even if intellectually I know I wouldn’t want to live there. The Global Warming Swimming Pool: Swimming Above a Submerged City [Neatorama]