Imagining a better future in thirty years than the future we are heading for now, requires a major “Don’t’ Look Up” event that would cause a paradigm shift and result in a significant reversal in the current trends of ever-increasing income inequality, climate change disasters and corporate control of the political agenda. That event could come sooner than expected, as scientists are sounding the alarm about the impending collapse of the Thwaites glacier, which is the size of Great Britain, in Antarctica.
The aptly nicknamed 80 miles wide “doomsday glacier” is held back by a floating ice shelf that is rapidly destabilizing as shown, with cracks crisscrossing its surface. When it breaks apart, the glacier could slide into the ocean causing sea levels to rise upwards of 65 cm (two feet), which would then flood coastlines throughout the world. Although this event would be devastating, it would be exactly what is needed to move the climate crisis to the forefront for everyone, including those who deny climate change and those who continue to profit off the continued use of carbon fuels.
One value of considering what a better future might look like is that it enables backcasting to identify what policies and programs are needed to reach to future desired state. By imagining an ideal future condition, one can better understand what is needed to get there. If we want our grandchildren to experience the best possible future, there is no better time than the present to help make that happen.
I am currently writing a series about the future for our region, the Shuswap. I will explore the possibilities that the future holds if the key pre-requisites are met to accelerate climate change adaptation, improve sustainability and achieve equitability. Read more on my blog, Shuswappassion.ca. I look forward to any comments and/or suggestions.