Thursday, December 19, 2013

Can We Face Our Future?

If you think you will be alive in 2052, read this book (link below).
If you care about your children and grandchildren who will be alive in 2052, read this book (link below).
If you care about the human race (especially in the US), read this book (link below).

"2052: A Global Forecast for the Next 40 Years” by Jorgen Randers (published 2012)


This book was not written by:
1. “Tree huggers” who are trying to promote their ideology, or
2. “Free enterprisers” who are trying to whitewash the impact of our actions. 

This book was written by:
A scientist (with a lot of help from other scientists) who tried to forecast what our lives will be like in 40 years based on the best data possible.

Here’s a summary (but you really should read the book):
"Global society will try to create a better life for everyone—mainly through continued economic growth. The effort will succeed in some places, but not everywhere. Billions will be better off in 2052 than in 2012, and some will reach Western lifestyles. The poorest two billion will be stuck near where they are today.

That effort to raise material standards will involve increasing energy use, and we’ll rely on fossil energy longer than is good for the climate. So, in 2052 the world will be looking back at forty years of accelerating climate damage, caused by continuous global warming, and bracing itself for the possibility of self-reinforcing, and therefore runaway, climate change.”

A few passages from the book:
"Global society will slide in the right direction, but a speed that leaves much to be desired. We will remain stuck too long in the ideal that individual rights have priority over the common good, a view that will be increasingly unhelpful in an ever crowded world."

"The old generation has always held the perspective that we are toiling to leave a better world for our children. We have made sacrifices to work harder and more. Often we have saved for their education and paid for their room and board long after their physical maturity. We have done this for so long and so automatically that we have not noticed that we no longer are being really helpful to our children. Many of them are ending up in an unattractive starting place."