A Glimpse into an Apocalyptic Future That I Hope We Don’t See
In the not-so-distant future, the year 2030 looms ominously as a harbinger of humanity’s failure to adequately address the perils of the climate crisis and the mass extinction of the vast majority of biodiversity.
A world heavily impacted by the consequences of our actions is rapidly unfolding before our very eyes. This serves as a sobering testament to the urgent need for global action whereas instead we seem intent on only making matters worse pursuing a seemingly suicidal strategy of absolute north sea oil extraction.
As we peer into this tumultuous future, the ramifications of unchecked climate change are becoming painfully evident, leaving no doubt about the need for immediate and decisive measures to mitigate its devastating effects.
We are now at the decision point where we have to decide whether we will we be the generation that killed or saved the world?
What will 2030 Look Like?
Rising global temperatures have become an unrelenting force, global boiling wreaks havoc on our planet’s ecosystems and human communities alike. The polar ice caps are almost gone, causing sea levels to surge and coastal regions to be submerged under relentless waves. Major coastal cities such as London, Miami, New York City, and Bangkok are at risk of becoming relics of the past, battered by tropical storms and ultimately swallowed by the rapidly rising tides. Millions of people have been displaced, forced to flee their homes, and seek refuge in increasingly overcrowded inland areas. The harrowing realities of climate-induced migration have become an unprecedented humanitarian crisis, straining resources and fuelling continuous and sadly increasingly violent social unrest.
Extreme Weather Events
Extreme weather events have become the new norm in this devastated world. Fierce hurricanes, intensified by boiling ocean waters, sprint across almost the entire globe with a ferocity never witnessed before. The frequency and intensity of droughts and heatwaves have multiplied, decimating agricultural systems and exacerbating food insecurity. Crop failures have become a grim reality, leading to soaring food prices, widespread hunger, and famine. The very fabric of our global food system has been irreparably damaged, leaving vulnerable populations in perpetual fear which has fuelled political conflict.
The Great Extinction
Biodiversity loss has pushed countless species to the brink of extinction. Iconic creatures such as polar bears, orangutans, and coral reefs have become tragic casualties of our disregard for the natural world. Ecosystems once teeming with life and vitality have been reduced to silent wastelands, devoid of their intricate web of interdependence. The collapse of ecosystems disrupts critical services such as pollination, soil fertility, and water purification, further exacerbating the challenges we face in securing a sustainable future for our planet.
The cost of infrastructure damage, disaster relief, and healthcare strains national budgets to their limits. The bankrupt insurance industry faces an existential crisis, grappling with an onslaught of claims and the unprecedented scale of climate-related risks. The global economy is thrown into a tailspin as supply chains are disrupted, markets destabilised, and industries are devastated by the cascading effects of climate-induced disruptions. In many parts of the world, the consequences of hyperinflation alongside climate disasters make money worthless. The once-thriving tourism sector, reliant on pristine environments and natural wonders, is dealt a crippling blow as destinations become uninhabitable or unrecognisable.
The Days Happiness Died
Grappling with the relentless onslaught of environmental disasters and continuous social disruption, mental health issues have skyrocketed. . The psychological toll of losing loved ones, witnessing the destruction of homes and livelihoods, and constantly fearing the next catastrophe has become an unbearable burden for many. Healthcare systems are overwhelmed and ill-equipped to cope with the magnitude of this crisis.
The collective trauma of a world torn apart by climate change leaves an indelible mark on future generations. Their outlook on life and hope for a stable future is forever altered. Birth rates have rapidly declined as widespread chemical pollution of our food and water result in serious fertility challenges and the pressure of life make many decide that this isn’t a world they would want to be born into.
Is this future inevitable?
Is it too late? The honest truth is that it might be. July is the hottest month on record with the 24 hottest days in a row. Much of Europe sits devastated as wildfires rip across the landscape, yet in the UK we are experiencing one of the wettest Julys this century Rapidly increasing ocean temperatures have resulted in 100% mortality rates of coral reefs in Florida, with huge numbers of marine and freshwater fish deaths as water is no longer able to hold oxygen. The global ice caps are melting at an alarming rate and have failed to recover any of their winter ice. All whilst our government is continuing to renege on environmental and climate commitments, instead deciding to focus on exploiting new gas and oil extraction! This can only be described as knowingly committing global suicidal…
Will we hear the Wake-Up Call?!
If it isn’t too late… the events of 2023 and this glimpse into the world of 2030 must serve as a powerful wake-up call, a dire warning of what lies ahead if we fail to act decisively. The urgency to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions, transition to renewable energy sources, protect and restore the natural world, and embrace a more regenerative way of life has never been greater. It is imperative that businesses, communities, and individuals come together in a concerted effort to address the climate crisis head-on!
And my promise is that Oxygen Conservation will do everything we can to try and save enough of the world to give the next generation a chance, and to put right what we’ve done so wrong for so long.
A Natural Capital Economy
Transitioning to a natural capital economy must be at the forefront of our collective agenda, recognising the true value and impact it will have on the natural world. Investments in renewable energy infrastructure, such as solar and wind power, must be scaled up exponentially. The shift from fossil fuels to clean and sustainable energy sources not only reduces greenhouse gas emissions but also creates new job opportunities and stimulates economic growth.
Public awareness campaigns, media engagement, and grassroots initiatives can mobilise communities, inspiring them to take action and hold policymakers and businesses fully accountable for their environmental impact. The true carbon and nature-based costs of what we do must be factored into future economic systems if we are to truly value the world around us.
This is one of the many painfully ironic, and frustrating ignorances of the climate crisis, for those only financially motivated, there really is no business case for the end of life on earth – delivering positive environmental and social impact is the only sustainable way to preserve and grow capital.
The Role of Business
The business community has a vital role to play in shaping a sustainable future. Embracing circular economy principles, reducing (and eliminating) waste, and adopting environmentally restorative practices can drive innovation, improve resource efficiency, and create a more sustainable business landscape. Investors and financial institutions should prioritise environmentally positive investments, rewarding companies that demonstrate a commitment to environmental, social, and governance (ESG) principles. Collaboration between businesses, future governments, and civil society is essential to foster a transition to a natural capital economy and ensure a just and equitable transition for all.
Natural Based Solutions
Promoting regenerative agriculture practices, reforestation, water conservation, and ecosystem restoration can help build the resilience of our food systems and ensure the well-being of both rural and urban populations. Nature-based solutions to carbon sequestration and storage are the only viable option to buy civilisation enough time for future generations to develop a technological solution to capture carbon at scale.
The Way We Live
We must support research and development in innovative technologies that promote energy efficiency, carbon capture, and sustainable transportation but also face the reality that we must consume less, compromise more, and be more mindful of our impacts in every aspect of how we live our lives.
Collaboration between nations (at every level) is paramount, as climate change knows no boundaries, and collective action is the only path forward. We face a simple choice of a collaborative future working together to protect against the impact of a changing climate or prepare for worldwide climate wars!
Education & Awareness
Education and awareness play a pivotal role in this transformative journey. We must empower individuals with the knowledge and tools to make sustainable choices in their daily lives. Education systems should integrate climate change into their curriculum, fostering a deep understanding of its causes, consequences, and solutions. Perhaps this is actually dated thinking as every young person I meet is so incredibly well self-taught with the range of material available digitally from across the globe.
The Next Generation Will Change Politics
You’ll note I’ve left the government out of this list. It is clear that they have little to no interest in being part of the solution. Until they demonstrate otherwise, I’ll assume the government is largely going to do nothing and anything they do will not help!
Also, I am sure that this will be one of the very last general elections that isn’t fought almost exclusively on environmental and climate-based issues. The young people voting in the next election will be more engaged, more informed, and more active than any generation before them. They will demand a solution to the problems our generation and the one before have caused. And they’re right – they will be the ones who have to pay off our debts!
An Alternative View of 2030
Ultimately, the world of 2030 need not be a dystopian vision of climate chaos. It can be a turning point, a moment when humanity rallied together to address the greatest challenge of our time. By honestly embracing the urgency and magnitude of the climate crisis and biodiversity collapse, we have the power to rewrite the narrative and forge a future where sustainability, resilience, and harmony with nature are the cornerstones of our existence.
If we’re not going to heed the warning of this month’s environmental headline, or in fact this glimpse offered into the future, then it will almost certainly be too late.
But, we can all choose to use it as a rallying cry for bold and decisive action not as a distant regret. The world heavily impacted by climate change in 2030 is not an inevitability, but a potential reality we can prevent. The time to act is now, for the sake of our planet, the delicate balance of life, and for future generations. If not us, who? If not now, when?. Together, we can create a future where the dire consequences of climate change are but a distant memory, and a sustainable and thriving world is our enduring legacy.
Do we want to be the generation that killed or saved the world?