In our Science Fiction Today posts, we’ve aimed to get out of the political fights of the present, and out of the logistical problems of the present, and think about what these issues will look like in the future – through the lens of science fiction. We have a lot of ideas, but a major one for me has always been the environment. A sticky and politicized problem, it’s hard to find someone without bias, or with a fact we can agree on, on this topic.
The problem as I see it is we are fighting over specifics like what is happening (global warming? climate change? or not?) and what is causing it (humans? not humans? not happening?). As someone who turns to science fiction for my food for thought, I think the better questions are the what ifs: what if the ice caps melt, or what if the earth cools? Science fiction can help us think of what might happen in this situation, and what people might do about it.
So first, I’m going to point out a real life situation where science fiction thinking might have helped, and then look at some possible thoughts for possible environmental situations for the future. My thinking at the moment seems to largely be hovering around the oceans and water, so we’ll go with that. Plenty more that could be talked about, and probably will be in the future.