Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Cli-fi moments: Are you still in denial about the real impacts of global warming? Check yourself against these quotes and comments...

"What most cli-fi novels tell us is that climate crisis and collapse won’t come all in a rush. It will be a slow accretion of problems, accidents, and missteps. A steady accumulation of stressors and shortages that finally trigger political and social unravellings, that then cause further domino effects. So one lone book or even a group of cli-fi novels won't really be about survivors after a climate apocalypse, no, these novels and movies will be stories about millions of people, all trying to adapt and shift, after spending too much time believing that ''Not Yet'' meant ''Never Will.''

''Many novelists with climate change themes keep telling themselves (and their readers) that they still have time before a true catastrophe impacts humankind, telling themselves (and their readers) that we all do have time, even if it’s just another decade or two. But do we, in fact, have time? And if we do have time, lots of time, even several centuries, 30 generations before the shit hits the fan, are most of us still living in denial and hoping against hope that we humans will find technological fixes to fix the problems, as we always have,  and therefore there is nothing to worry about, even 500 years down the road. But to think this, as I have just said out loud, isn't this a form of denial?"

''Some people say that many current cli-fi novels are unrealistic. Such a broken future that if often projected in the story, that kind of broken future just will never be, because we humans won’t ever be that stupid, or that selfish, or that  lacking in foresight. Will we?''

"I’m an ecologist and environmental consultant, and I did my graduate school work on climate change and ecological resilience. So, with apologies to the author of this dystopian cli-fi novel sety in the near futue, I can't say I really enjoyg reading her book very much. Not because it wasn’t a very, very good book, it is, it is, but because the world she’s describing is what gives me that cold feeling in the pit of my belly just about every time I seriously engage with my own field. And every time I contemplate the field my own child will be growing up in, and every time I see the TV news that this month’s climate anomaly almost rang the 1.5 Centigrade bell, and so on. The cold feeling isn’t just dread or fear, it’s the same damn guilt and denial she so eloquently describes in her novel – because let’s face it, I still drive a Subaru Outback to work, I still order from Amazon, and I still fly commercial aviation. Because even though I know as well as anybody that ''Not Yet'' is in a lot of ways ''Right Now'' or ''Pretty Goddamn Soon,'' right down to the statistical nitty gritty, I’m still in denial too. I admit it.''

''I really hope this dystopian cli-fi author is wrong about our future, but I’m afraid he is right."

    No comments: