You Think There's Someplace Safe To Escape The Climate Crisis?

Here in the U.S., we all figure we'll be dead before the Climate Crisis makes it unlivable-- except for folks in Miami-Dade, Broward County, Tampa-St Pete, Jacksonville and Ft Meyer in Florida, Norfolk, Virginia Beach and Chesapeake (VA), Charleston (SC), Newark and Jersey City (NJ), Corpus Christi (TX), Savannah (GA), Boston and Cambridge (MA), Stamford (CT) and... oh yeah New York City. I live in L.A. but not near the beach. Los Feliz is on a hill and I figure once Malibu, Santa Monica, Venice, Marina del Ray, LAX, Manhattan Beach, Hermosa Beach, Redondo Beach, San Pedro, etc are underwater, my house will still be fine. I guess L.A. will be kind of panic-stricken and dystopian by then though, right?

Did you see that piece yesterday by Heather Murphy, Will These Places Survive a Collapse? Don’t Bet on It, Skeptics Say in the NY Times? All that ignoring science about the climate crisis will bring about societal collapse. Presumably all the billionaires and the politicians they own will have been torn to pieces or lynched long ago. But a pair of English researchers say there are some relatively safe countries-- including islands! They're not talking about us-- and not really about our children. But they are talking about our grandchildren. "Will civilization as we know it, ask Aled Jones, director of the Global Sustainability Institute at Anglia Ruskin University in Cambridge, England, and his co-author, Nick King, "end in the next 100 years? Will there be any functioning places left? These questions might sound like the stuff of dystopian fiction. But if recent headlines about extreme weather, climate change, the ongoing pandemic and faltering global supply chains have you asking them, you’re not alone."

They attempted "to identify places that are best positioned to carry on when or if others fall apart. They call these lucky places 'nodes of persisting complexity.' The winner, tech billionaires who already own bunkers there will be pleased to know, is New Zealand. The runners-up are Tasmania, Ireland, Iceland, Britain, the United States and Canada." So all islands except the U.S. and Canada! But other climatologists disagree completely.

Jones' "model's underlying assumption is that when many countries are collapsing at the same time, the ones that are the best setup for self-sufficiency are the most likely to keep running. There are 21 countries that score over 65 on the Notre Dame adaptive initiative that ranks 181 countries annually on their readiness to successfully adapt to climate change. The scores are in terms of their vulnerability to climate change and other global challenges in combination with its readiness to improve resilience. I'm guessing that under 65 is failure and they all get wiped out.

  • Norway- 76.8

  • New Zealand- 75.5

  • Finland- 73.5

  • Switzerland- 72.5

  • Sweden- 72.4

  • Austria- 71.7

  • Denmark- 71.7

  • Iceland- 71.3

  • Singapore- 71.3

  • Germany- 70.8

  • UK- 70.2

  • Australia- 70.1

  • Luxembourg- 69.9

  • Canada- 68.4

  • South Korea- 68.3

  • France- 68.2

  • Japan- 68.0

  • Netherlands- 67.9

  • U.S.- 67.8

  • Slovenia- 65.6

  • Ireland- 65.0

At the bottom of the list are a dozen African countries plus Yemen and Afghanistan.

Jones and King added three additional measures: "whether the country has enough land to grow food for its people; whether it has the energy capacity to 'keep the lights on,' as he put it in an interview; and whether the country is sufficiently isolated to keep other people from walking across its borders, as its neighbors are collapsing. New Zealand comes out on top."