Climate chaos

The climate situation is deteriorating more quickly than I update this page.

My position: The realist in me knows that climate change is going to be worse than expected (e.g., IPCC). The optimist in me hopes that humans will find a “painless” way of coping with the results. The pessimist in me sees no evidence of our collective ability to cooperate in reducing the pain and a lot of evidence that our personal needs will result in additional collective failures, and thus chaos is more likely than change — and it’s coming sooner than later 🙁

Changing climate


Planning for the future

  • Which investments will be affected? (Invest in bonds, gold or guns, depending on your pessimism.)
  • Read Life Plus 2 Meters to engage with some scenarios. Also read Ministry for the Future.
  • The biggest CC risk is to food supplies. We’ve already depleted groundwater (“the savings account”), so when heat and drought ruin crops, there will be little ability to grow food. This situation will get worse when (not if) politicians interfere in markets to reduce or prohibit trade. Hungry people will riot and/or migrate. Read this (2023) paper for more.
  • My short-term forecast (until 2050) is that we will face increasingly chaotic and unpredictable (uncertainty) weather events such as fires, storms, floods, etc. These will be so common that we will accept them without making many changes (the way that you can accept the loss of a limb after some adjustment). Such events will also make us poorer (diverting effort to recovery) and harm the poorest who can barely pay for their current subsistence.
  • My medium-term forecast (next 200 years) is that the Netherlands, while vulnerable to inevitable SLR (a risk), will be a better place to live than other places that are less-vulnerable physically but more-vulnerable in terms of governance.
  • Read Jem Bendell’s Deep Adapatation paper (2018) and Breaking Together (2023) book. Here’s my review of Hartford’s 2012 Adapt.

Last updated: Aug 2023.