, 17 tweets, 3 min read Read on Twitter
I have been having complicated thoughts about climate change and the new world we are about to find ourselves in, and so of course my brain decides the perfect time to tweet about it is when I have to run out the door in a few minutes.

Thanks, brain.
I’ll be honest—more and more, I’m pretty sure we’re not gonna stop climate change.

But I do think we’re going to adapt to it.
Now, before someone jumps in with “So I guess we shouldn’t even try!”—no. Every degree we manage to carve out saves untold amounts of suffering and makes the new planet look more like the old one. We can still do a helluva lot of mitigation.
But the problem with all the doomsday scenarios about “twelve years to the end of the world!” and whatnot is that...well...what happens at 12+1? I’m pretty sure we don’t all just take in a lungful of CO2 and drop dead.
Humans are extraordinarily adaptable. And we live everywhere. Super rural Tibet is a relentlessly hard climate, but people lived there. They bred a domestic animal that could live on stuff you and I can barely see and built a really extraordinary culture.
So if stuff turns into deserts...look, people lived in deserts for millennia. Jungles, same. I just don’t see humanity going the way of the dodo.
THAT BEING SAID—oh my god, it is gonna suck. I expect massive storms, climate refugees, famine, plague, water wars, you name it.
The more we can put the brakes on, the more we can slow some of those things. I don’t think we’re going to stop them entirely.
But here’s the bit that keeps rattling around my brain. This weird new planet we’re making is still malleable. We are the people who get to decide what to bring with us.
(Tons of stuff is getting there without us, obviously. We don’t get to vote to kick mosquitoes off the island.)
We’ve been sold a bill of goods about individual choice saving the world, like if you and I don’t get drinking straws and take shorter showers, it counters Exxon.
But this is the bit that you and I as individuals actually have a shot at. I mean, I always think in gardening terms, obviously. But over at @NativeSeedsSRCH they’re trying to preserve a bean variety from sixteen remaining seeds.
If it lives, that’s a plant that goes to the weird new world with us. Maybe one that’ll do really well there. Maybe one we’ll come to love.
The Phoenix zoo pretty much saved an oryx species. A botanist sent home Franklinia seeds. The Lord Howe Stick Insect was down to one female, and the keeper was holding her in his hands begging her not to die. (She didn’t.)
This is the weird, fraught cusp where I feel like individuals can actually still do meaningful stuff that isn’t, y’know, terrifying last-ditch heroics as the waves come over the sea wall.
Anyway. The new world will be interesting. I suspect it’ll scare the hell out of us. I hope we manage to make it look a lot like the old one.
But I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t just a tiny bit curious to see what it will look like.
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