1 November 2015

Climate change and Destiny Studies: Creating our near and far futures

Robert Socolow

Socolow is chair of the Bulletin's Science and Security Board and the codirector of Princeton University...


Climate change makes stringent demands on thinking about our future. We need two-sided reasoning to contend equitably with the risks of climate change and the risks of "solutions." We need to differentiate the future 500 years from now and 50 years from now. This essay explores three pressing climate change issues, using both the 500-year and the 50-year time frames: sea level rise, the nuclear power "solution," and fossil carbon abundance.