The Collapse of Western Civilization
By Naomi Oreskes and Erik Conway
The year is 2393 and the world as we know it has ceased to exist. Earth, damaged by excess carbon levels, is fraught with catastrophic drought and famine. Rising sea levels have overtaken major cities, and more than 60 percent of species are extinct. Collapse is more than mere speculation, though. It’s based on scientists’ projections of the likely consequences of climate change already underway.
By looking back from an imagined future date, science historians Oreskes and Conway bring our current inaction into sharp relief. Their embellishments — such as the rise of authoritarian regimes more willing than democratic societies to impose drastic measures — give the book a heightened sense of reality. Though short, Collapse provides a detailed examination of how we’ve failed our environment — and a call to action to save what’s left. — Brenda Poppy