"The Anthropocene Age — the age of humans, which has caused mass extinctions of plant and animal species and the pollution of the soil, air and oceans – is underway. I fear it is irreversible. The pace of destruction is accelerating. Sea levels are rising three times faster than predicted. The arctic ice is vanishing at rates that were unforeseen. Even if we stop carbon emissions today— we have already reached 400 parts per million — it seems likely that carbon dioxide concentrations will continue to climb to 550 ppm. Global temperatures, even in the best of scenarios, will therefore rise for at least another century. And this assumes we actually confront this crisis today — which we show no signs of doing.

"Interlocking systems will suddenly no longer be able to sustain each other. This breakdown, therefore, will be nonlinear. It will not be defined by a single event such as rising temperatures. We will see entire ecosystems and social and political institutions that sustain life — which make a complex society function — disintegrate, probably at roughly the same time. The infrastructures that distribute food, supply our energy, ensure our security, produce and transport consumer products, and maintain law and order will fray and crumble under the strain. The combined assault of soaring temperatures, submerged island states and coastal cities, mass migrations, violence, war, species extinction, monster storms, declining crop yields, droughts and famines will define much of the planet. A pervasive and ruthless security and surveillance apparatus, along with a heavily militarized police empowered to use indiscriminant lethal force, will turn industrial nations into climate fortresses to keep out refugees — we are already seeing this in Europe and along our border with Mexico — and make sure that a restive and desperate population inside these fortresses remains frightened and under control. The elites will retreat to protected compounds where they will have access to services and amenities, including food, water and medical care, denied to the rest of us. It will become the world Hobbes feared."