Grave warnings from climate scientists about the affects of global warming are abundant and forecasts of state specific impacts have been created. As ice caps melt and weather patterns shift, the million dollar question is how climate change will alter our lives. What will the world be like on New Year’s Day 2030?
British-based think-tank, Forum for the Future and researchers from Hewlett-Packard explored several scenarios of how climate change will impact business, government, and daily life. Here is what they came up with:
Market forces and incentives forged by the EU create a carbon constrained economy that inspires technological innovation. The US jumps at the opportunity as a way to help revive their shattered economy by utilizing vast pools of renewable resources, thus achieving development through growth.
Vast solar arrays cover large tracts of land in north Africa, geo-engineering projects suck carbon dioxide out of the air, and cars run on electricity. Many decision making processes are handled by extremely sophisticated super-computers and carbon emissions flatlined in 2020.
The downside of this scenario is that ecosystems are in severe decline, the rich get richer while the poor get poorer, and social conflict is on the rise. Natural resources have become extremely scarce, which is a recipe for disaster…
Environmental War Economy
The window of opportunity to use market forces slipped away without the significant changes needed until catastrophic changes in weather forced draconian action. Strict policies and harsh fines and needed to shape behavior. Carbon monitors are mandatory in homes, businesses are in decline, and personal liberties are lost. Finally around 2030, carbon emissions begin to decline.
Adaptation prevails and nations look out only for their own best interests. Governments have pulled out of treaties due to individual self-interest, fought wars over water and food, and raised trade barriers. ‘Tragedy of the commons’ is the result of such actions. By 2030, the UN is near collapse and carbon emissions have not been adequately tackled, while quality of life is severely deteriorating.
Do you think these are likely scenarios? How do you think climate change will shape our lives, communities, businesses, and governments?
Photo Credit (lower photo): Ausra