The Crash: The Eastern Seaboard of North America

It is impossible to tell the future. This fact has never stopped a single person from trying, and it will not stop me now. So much for the disclaimer.

It is possible to watch the climate trends since 1990 in this region, and to extrapolate the ways the weather is changing. One of the most obvious elements of this shift is the weakening of the Gulf Stream. Because of this, hot air and water are not being removed from the Gulf of Mexico, which encourages an increase in storm activity, particularly in the form of hurricanes. A super-heated Gulf Coast means a storm system barely sustaining itself as a category one hurricane named Katrina could be super-charged to a category five. But, in general, the increased heat in the Gulf, and throughout the region, has increased evaporation. In turn making this one of the wettest years on record. Perhaps the most interesting change has been the increase in tornadoes in the region.

Ok, what does this all mean? Its getting hotter and wetter. As the poisons in the air settle, and the active deforestation due to human activity ceases, the situation will become very simple. Hotter, wetter, an excess of carbon, a release of human-bound nutrients, a reduction of poisons, a dramatic decrease in pesticide use, and deforestation will all lead to a drastic increase in plant growth, which will cause an increase in herbivore populations, causing an increase in carnivore populations.

Hotter and wetter with a large amount of plants. The region seems to be changing into a temperate rain forest. How much hotter is impossible to calculate. But ten years ago kudzu could not grow well in Washington DC because it was too cold. It currently grows in New York.

-Benjamin Shender

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8 Comments

  1. Amos Keppler said,

    July 19, 2006 at 11:14 am

    Hopefully we will have a green, lush, savage world without technology and civilization.

  2. Valnurana said,

    July 19, 2006 at 3:03 pm

    Unfortunately that can never be. The scars of civilization are forever – or near enough as to not matter. Plans for what is to come must take that into consideration. Check out S.M. Stirling’s “Dies the Fire” for an interesting take on this issue.

  3. Amos Keppler said,

    July 19, 2006 at 5:58 pm

    Of course that can be. Nature will have repaired itself in a few decades. It will take time, of course, until the variety and numbers of other larger mammals and fish return, but it will happen.

  4. Valnurana said,

    July 20, 2006 at 8:50 am

    Perhaps in eons, but not, I think, in decades. The tobacco fields of Southern Maryland might quickly return to the wild, but New York City won’t just disappear. It will be gradually reclaimed, but Manhattan Island will never be what it was.
    Personally, I’m hoping for a touch of sanity in all this. While I agree with Benjamin, hydrocarbons are a high price to pay for flush toilets, I would truly miss the flush toilets.

  5. Amos Keppler said,

    July 20, 2006 at 11:34 am

    I won’t. Areas of large cities will never be as they were, nature will fairly soon reclaim everything.

  6. Aftermath said,

    July 20, 2006 at 12:38 pm

    Hmm…you know, there is nothing inherent about flush toilets requiring hydrocarbons.

    The environment will rejuvenate at a surprising rate. It will never be like the forests were when Columbus first set foot in the new world, but the cities will be reclaimed. I doubt it would take as long as a full eon, but New York City will still be a recognizable scar for centuries…unless it’s completely submerged, of course.

    I’m kind of thinking temperate rain-forest for the east coast and hot and dry over in the west. But I reserve the right to change my opinion once I’m proven wrong.

    -Benjamin Shender

  7. Amos Keppler said,

    July 21, 2006 at 7:28 am

    There will be major deserts on all continents, also in america and europe. Kansas and the Ukraine (former major agriculture areas clinging to past glory) are already a dustbin. A bit further north the natural forests will eventually return, though.

  8. June 19, 2010 at 10:54 pm

    […] The Crash: The Eastern Seaboard of North¬†America […]


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