Welcome to the slowpocalypse
The "collapse" we face will likely be a slow decline, and it looks like we're already in it.
By Lisa Brunette
Maybe my endorsement of the groundbreaking environmental warning Limits to Growth blew your mind. Maybe it angered you… or galvanized you into further action. But even if it simply made you roll your eyes and move on, I think there’s one thing we can all agree on:
‘Climate change’ isn’t going away anytime soon.
Undeniably, we have a cultural obsession with this topic. For a subject that seems to go nowhere, it sure is everywhere, all at once. I’ll be honest: I got burnt out decades ago on the environmental gloom-and-doom rhetoric, so by the time Internet trolls were fashioning memes making fun of AOC for claiming we’ll all be inundated by sea-level rise in a matter of years, I’d already been down that road and back again. So I can’t blame you for clicking past when I presented you with the surely life-affirming announcement that the world as we know it will end.
Whether you’re freaking out about utility bills in the UK or the monarch butterfly’s new ‘endangered’ status listing, environmental news is rarely good news. But either we’re all super into “doomscrolling,” or we kinda just need to know about something that determines our very own future as a species.
So let’s unpack the Limits to Growth revelation further, OK?
I promise it won’t hurt.
Maybe it will even make you feel better.
Let me say that in talking about these issues, it’s hard to deal with the factor of time. I’m no Chicken Little, telling you the sky is falling… right now, anyway. That’s why I’m calling what’s happening a “slowpocalypse,” in honor of its gradual unfolding. You might remember in the review of Limits to Growth, I cautioned
The authors aren’t saying that we’re going to run out of oil tomorrow, or that the apocalypse is imminent.
They studiously avoid unqualified predictions, especially with pinpointed dates. Their worst-case scenario model, the one we’re emulating oh-so-well, puts collapse sometime between the years 2000 and 2050. That’s a half-century variance, which is significant. We’re not talking about a singular event producing wrath-of-God-type stuff, or even dogs and cats living together. Nope. Instead, we’re having a slowpocalypse.
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