It’s a good question, and Marc Hudson at the University of Manchester in the UK has his point of view here.
Meanwhile, reality is catching up with fiction. In 2016, a Canadian novelist, Craig Russell — who is also a lawyer and a theater director in Manitoba — wrote an environmental thriller titled “Fragment” about a major calving event along the ice shelf of Antarctica. The Yale Climate Connections website recently recommended the novel as a good summer read for this crazy summer of 2017 in Trumplandia.
The novel was published in Canada by Thistledown Press about ten months ago. And in a case of art predicting the future, and of reality mirroring art, scientists in Antarctica are in fact right now this month monitoring the Larsen C ice shelf with a huge crack in it and threatening to fall into the sea any day now. This is not fiction now, this is fact. Well, soon to be fact. Next week, next month, soon.
I asked Craig Russell how he felt about his novel being in the news now. Does it seem that he could see the future before the rest of us?
“Some 40 years ago, as a student, I lived and worked at a Canadian Arctic weather station, 500 miles from the North Pole,” he added. “So I’ve remained interested in polar events, and was both fascinated and appalled by the Larsen A and B ice shelf collapses in 1995 and 2002.”
His cli-fi novel was published in October 2016, and within weeks the global media was full of the Larsen C runaway rift, and the two huge cracks on the Brunt Ice Shelf that have forced the evacuation of the British Halley VI Research Station, Russell recalled.
“To see world events catch up so quickly with a fictional reality I spent years creating has been quite unnerving,” he added.
“Thanks for your work on making people more aware of ‘cli-fi.’
It feels like humanity is standing on the cliff edge, and our governments need to take real action.