ClimateViewer 3D Tutorial: Using the Google Earth Climate Change, Pollution, and Privacy Viewer

Welcome to the Climate Viewer 3D tutorial.  This article will explain pre-requisites, installation, and use of our Google Earth climate change and pollution app. 

If you already have Google Earth plugin installed, click here to skip the installation instructions.

Tables of Contents




The Google Earth Plugin is currently supported on the following platforms:

  • Microsoft Windows (XP, Vista, 7, and 8)
    • Google Chrome 5.0+ (recommended)
    • Internet Explorer 7.0+
    • Firefox 3.0+ (recommended)
    • Flock 1.0+
  • Apple Mac OS X 10.5 and higher (Intel)
    • Google Chrome 5.0+ (recommended)
    • Safari 3.1+
    • Firefox 3.0+ (recommended)

If your device is not supported, you will be redirected to our 2D Google Maps features.  This is only temporary, as we are working on a new WebGL application that works on Linux, tablets, and mobiles, coming soon!



To install the Google Earth Plugin, go to and you should see the following warning:


(This popup alert gives steps for users experiencing difficulty with the GE plugin, and steps to clear your cache) :

Click “OK”

Now click “Download the Google Earth Plugin”



Save the file, then run the installation.  This should appear:




Click “Close”.  Your window should now show this:


Refresh your browser
(press the “F5” key on your keyboard on Windows, “Command (apple) + R” on Macintosh)
Congratulations, your installation is complete and you are ready to rock!



User Interface

Here is the user interface:



Web Links

  • News: takes you to the Climate Viewer News front page.
  • Features: takes you to the Climate Viewer Features front page
  • Instructions: brings you here silly! /bonk
  • CV Reports: lets you view the latest Climate Viewer user reports. Add yours today, click “Submit a Report.”
  • Forum: takes you to our forum, of course.
  • About: a little about what we do and why we do it.
  • Donate: link to our donation page.  If you appreciate our app, and want to help out, please donate.  We do not receive advertising dollars and rely on your donations to pay the bills.  Please support our work.


Window Controls

  • Clear All: removes all map layers from the globe.  This is your “start over” button.
  • Reset Camera: camera zooms out and centers on the USA.  Use this button to zoom out fast.
  • Close-sidebar-ClimateViewer-3D : Right arrow will collapse the side bar, hiding the Map Layers, making the globe full screen width.
  • Close-control-bar-ClimateViewer-3D : Up arrow will hide the top bar containing the Search Bar and 3D Globe Controls
  • Close-status-bar-ClimateViewer-3D : Down arrow will hide the bottom bar containing your position, sharing, and plugin version information.
  • Fullscreen-toggle-ClimateViewer-3D : Fullscreen button, toggles the visibility of all three bars.


3D Globe Controls

This image will explain how these controls affect the scene rendering of the Google Earth globe.



View Controls

These images will explain how to use the Navigation and Street View controls:


When you drag the Street View icon, your window switches to this view:



Map Layers

This section will show you how to make things appear on the globe.  Here are the main categories of map layers:


  • Alerts: REAL-TIME weather, nuclear, earthquakes, volcano, fire, and more emergency alerts.
  • Satellites: REAL-TIME NASA satellite feeds, MODIS Terra/Aqua, GOES, Aura, MIMIC, and more.
  • Climate: REAL-TIME atmospheric monitoring of aerosols, climate change, and historic climate data.
  • Weather: REAL-TIME forecasts, radar, clouds, lightning, precipitation, oceanic, and surface readings (METAR) as well as space-weather conditions.
  • Pollution: Climate Viewer News pollution reports, toxic releases, cleanup sites, nuclear waste, radioactive fallout, world wide power plants and their waste, fracking wells, and weather modification/geoengineering.
  • Places: Vehicle tracking (satellites, flights, boats, buoys), Nuclear facilities (power plants, waste, warheads), Big Brother (NSA SCS sites, drones, DHS fusion centers), Electromagnetic (high power EMF sources, Electrosmog), FCC database (broadcast towers)
  • News & More:  Climate Viewer Reports user-reports monthly volumes, Carbon Capture Reports daily news feeds, NASA static layers, Statistical layers, “Load your own” KML, and ClimateViewer TV for something to listen to while you browse.

Click the “Alerts” category and it will expand:



Layer Buttons

When you click any layer button, it will turn blue and a check mark will appear letting you know the layer is loaded and visible on the globe.  If a layer is not available or a link is broken, the button will turn yellow, an alert symbol will appear, and a link to report the broken layer button will appear.  Clicking any loaded (blue) map layer button a second time will remove it from the globe.  At any time you can click the “Clear All” button on the top right of the app to remove all layers at once.

After your layer is successfully loaded, a URL link to the layer’s source page, a short description of the source, and a download link to the Google Earth KML file will appear (we are very open-source).

There are two types of layer buttons:

  • Standard: displays source, description, download link, and displays layer on globe. Some layers are very large and generating a “Tree View” is CPU intensive, therefore some layers are shown without a tree.
  • Tree View: displays source, description, download link, and displays layer on globe.  This view also expands the KML layer to show its contents in a tree format, providing additional controls over data.

Click on the “Alerts” category, under the “Earthquakes” section, click on “USGS” and “CSEM/EMSC”

The USGS earthquake layer is an example of a Tree View format, and the CSEM/EMSC layer is a Standard layer:



Tree View

  • Triangle: click to expand folder, see folder contents.  In some cases, clicking a triangle may download additional layers.  If so, a loading spinner will appear until fully loaded.
  • Checkbox: toggles visibility. Uncheck to remove item from globe.
  • Icon: shows this markers icon.  Double-click to zoom to this location.
  • Marker name:
    • Underlined: has HTML content.  Click this to view details in a popup window.
    • Double-right-click to zoom to location.


Climate Viewer 3D allows you to overlay many different layers at once.  Allow a layer to fully load before clicking the next layer button.

You may enable as many layers as your system can handle, just be careful, some layers are massive!

Click map markers on the globe and details will appear in a popup.

Climate Viewer 3D with 3 layers active: satellite tracker, missile defense radars, and total electron content


Time Sliders

Some layers come with time-relevant data.  A time controller will appear in the upper-left corner of the 3D globe window.  Drag the slider adjust date:


Time slider may also have two handles, called extents.  Any data between these two extents will become visible on the globe:



Search Bar

The search bar allows you to find locations on the globe using Google’s geocoder.


Search Types

The following types of searches are supported:

  • street address indicates a precise street address.
    • floor indicates the floor of a building address.
    • establishment typically indicates a place that has not yet been categorized.
    • parking indicates a parking lot or parking structure.
    • post box indicates a specific postal box.
    • postal town indicates a grouping of geographic areas, such as locality and sublocality, used for mailing addresses in some countries.
    • room indicates the room of a building address.
    • street_number indicates the precise street number.
    • bus stationtrain station and transit station indicate the location of a bus, train or public transit stop.
  • route indicates a named route (such as “US 101”).
  • intersection indicates a major intersection, usually of two major roads.
  • political indicates a political entity. Usually, this type indicates a polygon of some civil administration.
  • country indicates the national political entity, and is typically the highest order type returned by the Geocoder.
  • administrative area level 1 indicates a first-order civil entity below the country level. Within the United States, these administrative levels are states. Not all nations exhibit these administrative levels.
  • administrative area level 2 indicates a second-order civil entity below the country level. Within the United States, these administrative levels are counties. Not all nations exhibit these administrative levels.
  • administrative area level 3 indicates a third-order civil entity below the country level. This type indicates a minor civil division. Not all nations exhibit these administrative levels.
  • colloquial area indicates a commonly-used alternative name for the entity.
  • locality indicates an incorporated city or town political entity.
  • sublocality indicates a first-order civil entity below a locality. For some locations may receive one of the additional types: sublocality level 1 through to sublocality level 5. Each sublocality level is a civil entity. Larger numbers indicate a smaller geographic area.
  • neighborhood indicates a named neighborhood
  • premise indicates a named location, usually a building or collection of buildings with a common name
  • subpremise indicates a first-order entity below a named location, usually a singular building within a collection of buildings with a common name
  • postal code indicates a postal code as used to address postal mail within the country.
  • natural feature indicates a prominent natural feature.
  • airport indicates an airport.
  • park indicates a named park.
  • point of interest indicates a named point of interest. Typically, these “POI”s are prominent local entities that don’t easily fit in another category such as “Empire State Building” or “Statue of Liberty.”

NOTE: Searching for map layer contents or markers is not supported. 


Adding Placemarks

Method 1: using the search bar.

By default, the search bar has “Times Square, Manhattan, NY 10036” filled in.


Click “Search” and the globe’s view should fly to Times Square.

A popup will ask you if you would like to add a marker:


Click “OK” to add a placemark or “Cancel” to skip adding a marker.



Method 2: using the mouse.

Ctrl-Click on the globe to search for an address corresponding to the given location.  You will be asked if you would like to add a placemark, choose “OK.”

Shift-Click on a geocoder placemark to remove it:


Alt-Click on a geocoder placemark to edit its name and description:


Drag a geocoder placemark to change its location.


Saving Placemarks

The Save As button will appear to the right of the “Search” button when you add placemarks to the globe.


Click the Save As button to save your geocoder placemarks as a Google Earth KML 2.2 document.



Click “OK” and a download window will open:


Click “OK” to save your Google Earth KML file.


Keyboard and Mouse Controls


  • Click map marker:  opens a popup window with details about the marker location.
  • Click on ground, hold and drag: move around
  • Double left-click: zoom in fast,


Default Google Earth plugin keyboard controls:

Command Windows/Linux
Move left Left arrow Left arrow Moves the viewer in the direction of the arrow.
Move right Right arrow Right arrow Moves the viewer in the direction of the arrow.
Move up Up arrow Up arrow Moves the viewer in the direction of the arrow.
Move down Down arrow Down arrow Moves the viewer in the direction of the arrow.
Rotate clockwise Shift + left arrow Shift + left arrow Rotates the view clockwise. The earth spins counter-clockwise.
Rotate counter-clockwise Shift + right arrow Shift + right arrow Rotates the view counter-clockwise.
Show/hide Overview window CTRL + M Command/Open Apple Key + M Displays or closes overview window.
Tilt up Shift + left mouse button + drag down, Shift + down arrow Shift + down arrow Tilts the viewer toward “horizon” view.
Tilt down Shift + left mouse button + drag up, Shift + up arrow Shift + up arrow Tilts the viewer toward “top-down” view.
Look CTRL + left mouse button + drag Command/Open Apple Key + mouse button + drag Perspective points in another direction, as if you are turning your head up, down, left or right.
Zoom in Scroll wheel, + key, PgUp key Scroll wheel, + key Zooms the viewer in. Tip: to use the ‘Page Up’ key, make sure ‘Num Lock’ on your keyboard is off.
Zoom out Scroll wheel, – key (both keyboard and numpad), PgDn key Scroll wheel, – key (both keyboard and numpad) Zooms the viewer out. Tip: to use the ‘Page Down’ key, make sure ‘Num Lock’ on your keyboard is off.
Zoom + automatic tilt Right mouse button + drag up or down CTRL + click + drag up or down Zooms the viewer in and automatically tilts your view as you approach ground level.
Stop current motion Spacebar Spacebar When the viewer is in motion, stops movement
Reset view to “north – up” n n Rotates view so that view is ‘n‘orth-up.
Reset tilt to “top-down” view u u Resets angle to view scene in “top-down” or “‘u‘p” mode.
Reset tilt and compass view to default r r R‘esets angle to view “top-down” and rotates to “north-up” view. Use this feature to orient the earth in the center of the viewer.

For more information, see Navigating in Google Earth.



Should you need to uninstall the Google Earth plugin, here are the instructions:

  • Windows: Select Start > Programs (or All Programs) > Google Earth > Uninstall Google Earth Plug-in.
  • Mac: Delete /Library/Internet Plug-ins/Google Earth Web Plug-in.plugin before restarting your browser.


  1. google earth aka government google aka Ovomit’s microscope up your ass to monitor you with government cookies as you surf the web. If you can use an extensive program like this , what has the NSA got for their bay window…..and why is this program hosted by google and not another search engine?….answer…government google! f**k Ovomit ,he lied about Fukushima, Benghazi and Fast and Furious, after all who is going to die and leave him as an anointed ni**er king?….answer…millions of men women and children, because he lied about the danger of radiation poison as did TEPCO and as the Russians did in Chernobyl. that mistake killed 1 millions Russians !The nips created a disaster built by GE that is 200 X greater than Chernobyl GE has posted profits since the 4 plant melt down across the board …and the ni**er Kenyan born president wants to build more plants while most of the 100 in America are falling apart and in need of repair .I guess the campaign donations from the NRC help him remain stupid ignorant and compliant, the same way he wants Americans to be. I hope his face falls off with the CEO’s of GE before civilization is exterminated by fall out!


    1. I understand your frustration with Google, we are dumping them soon and switching to an Open Street Maps and Cesium JS combo which is completely open-sourced. Stay tuned!


  2. I am working on a project about the global warming which I have identified the cause of it. I am going toward the same direction as you are, but you have much more information on this area. Would you like to work with me to bring this global warming to the light? Thanks


  3. Thanks for your reply. There has been a new update of the AtomJump API that you might be interested in – retina screens, KML and GeoJSON support off your own servers, new demos available, custom map icons for each different point of interest. A WebGL solution is only supported on 35% of user’s browsers, so feel free to get in touch and suggest more features that you might need from an API.



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