There may come a time when the entire Lower 48 becomes unlivable and abandoned, due to extreme droughts, floods, sea level rise and a general lack of food, fuel and power. As we all know, it’s not going to be a pretty picture, and the time to prepare is now.
I’m talking Alaska and northern Canada as well. Because by the time the Lower 48 becomes unlivable, the White House will have been relocated to Fairbanks, the U.S. Congress will meet in Juneau’s legislative halls, and the Supreme Court will be based in Anchorage. The continental United States, the part that still can afford the terrain and space to house climate refugees from the Lower 48 will at some point in time be completely contained inside the borders of what is now our 49th state — Alaska, “the Last Frontier.”
Stephan Malone, a futurist based in Florida, has written an informal “guide to living in a polar city” — with the published Kindle title of “Polar City Dreaming: How Climate Change Might Usher In The Age Of Polar Cities” — and while it’s hardly a bestseller now, being published in early 2013, the author provides a glimpse into what life might be like when the Lower 48 is beyond redemption (or habitation).
Malone’s eBook goes into such topics as:
- Farming and food in Alaska
- Climate refugee settlements security and defense
- Energy sources for a post-Lower 48 world
- Healthcare, hospitals and doctors
- Admittance and governance of refugee settlements
- De-finding settlements from scavengers and marauders
- Government and law in a post-Lower 48 world
- Entertainment, computers and media
- Reproduction and midwifery
- Education and short-range transportation
Malone has written a book that, if you read it carefully, will change your life and the way you look at the future. Read it in that spirit, and remember that life in so-called “polar cities” arrayed around the shores of an ice-free Arctic Ocean in a greenhouse-warmed world is coming down the road in the distant future when the Lower 48
is no more.
Not now, not yet. But soon. A hundred years? Three hundred years? Five hundred years? Soon.
James Lovelock, who in 1972 conceived of Earth’s crust, climate and veneer of life as a unified self-sustaining entity, Gaia, foresees humanity in full pole-bound retreat within the next 500 to 1,000 years as areas around the tropics roast — a scenario far outside even the worst-case projections of climate scientists. Lovelock is serious, and Malone’s book is serious, too. Read it as a guide to taking action and surviving life in a future Alaska and other points north.
Malone, in his early 40s, says his intent was to conduct mere a ”thought experiment” that might prod people out of
their comfort zones on climate — which remains, for many, even today, a someday, somewhere issue.
“At six going on eight billion people,” Lovelock told the New York Times in an interview in 2006, “the idea of any further development is almost obscene. We’ve got to learn how to retreat from the world that we’re in. Planning a good retreat is always a good measure of generalship.”
The retreat, Lovelock insisted, even then, would be toward the poles. Enter the concept of “polar cities” for survivors of global warming and climate chaos in some distant future when we all find refuge in the Last Frontier. Alaska has that nickname for a good reason! It will be our last frontier in what’s left of these United States of America.
As our descendants are driven to Arctic shores by climate calamity in the Lower 48, it’s a sure bet that the far north will be an ever busier place.
Urban planners, get out your mukluks.
Preppers, use Malone’s far-seeing eBook as a home resource to help you to envision what life might very well be
like for your kinfolk, far far down “the road.”
Some call these ideas “cli fi”, for climate fiction, a kind of sub-genre of sci fi. ButI think Malone’s book goes beyond cli fi into the realm of reality!