Disclaimer: this is not a bizarre Inigo thread. It will be safe to assume I’m not joking at any point in this thread.
Now, assuming the science is correct and that humans are in fact responsible for the climate changes, and that said changes are not simply part of some kind of climatic pendulum swing which will create an environment better suited to giant lizards and invertebrates, it looks like we have a problem (see Venus). Specifically, it looks like we are causing a problem. A couple solutions present themselves.
We could develop interstellar travel and seed our kind on habitable planets a few million or so people at a time. That could establish viable communities but it wouldn’t make much of a dent in our population issue here at home. But who goes? Are there that many volunteers? If not, who gets appointed? And heaven help the indigenous life on the planet we invade–if we identify sentient, civilzed beings (even aquatic Gungans) do we still land or do we keep looking for another place to put the colonists?
Should we be unable to master interstellar colonization in the next 100 years, we run the very real risk of creating a climate unsuitable for humanity due exclusively to our drive to multiply ourselves. Yes, we can live greener–either by the enlightened choice of 7-9 million individuals (the cynics among us are not hopeful this will happen), or by legislating away non-green, polluting technologies. Even if we could get the world’s governments on board (the cynics are choking again) with enforcing world-saving measures, we’d still need to significantly modify our approach to what we consider edible foods. GMO plants and animals, or possibly lab-produced foods made from waste products and a little bit-o-sunshine are likely options. And even then…what and why? So the 9 million can become 12 million?
My point: As a species, we are well-established and under no threat of extinction from any source other than being metaphorically crushed under the ecologic weight of ourownselves. As we are our own long-term problem, does it not make sense to start ‘weeding the garden?’ Yes, that means eugenics for one thing. And it also means actively or passively culling those whose contributions to society are negligible to negative. Today, we feed and house convicts who have demonstrated their disdain for their fellows, and for the same cost we could improve the living conditions of millions of others who might contribute if given the means & opportunity–whom we allow instead to waste away in poverty and ignorance. Yes, that’s not fair to everyone, but it’s looking like we are facing a real world manifestation of “please all and please none.” Of course, by allowing/causing the desperate to die we risk losing what is left of our ideas about compassion, but maybe it is time to shed our compassion as we have our tails.