The Great Collapse


  • Human population peaks at 10.3 billion.
  • Earth’s global average temperature reaches 1.6° C above pre-industrial levels.
  • Over three consecutive years with record setting summer heat waves, vast sections of the tundra across North America and Siberia thaw. These melt-offs release massive amounts of methane into the atmosphere. The methane spike is severe enough that global temperatures begin to climb quickly (Methane is a greenhouse gas and is thirty times more effective at trapping heat than carbon dioxide).
  • This event begins a cascade effect that accelerates climate change beyond scientific model projections.



  • Scientists estimate global average temperature will rise 1°C per decade for a minimum of thirty to forty years as a result of the methane spike although this condition could extend or accelerate as warming upsets more of the ecosystem of frozen areas.
  • Drought and wildfires additionally complicate the climate outlook, and food production worldwide plummets as a deeper wave of famine spreads through Africa.



  • Human population declines to 9.9 billion.
  • Food production falls globally by 50%. Four hundred million people die worldwide in the decade after the thaw begins, mostly as a result of starvation. Food riots have become continuous occurrences, and many nations have declared martial law.



  • The North American drought intensifies and spreads to Europe and Africa. Food production falls by another 10%.
  • Fresh water supplies worldwide begin to diminish. Agricultural use of water competes with human consumption. Many industrial facilities are idled for lack of industrial water availability.



  • Many poorer nations face water riots in addition to the food riots, and military conflicts erupt over water rights. People begin to flee drier areas overrunning many international borders and causing political turmoil worldwide.



  • Human population falls to 8.6 billion. Famine and water shortages combine to cause 1.3 billion deaths worldwide.
  • Earth’s global average temperature approaches 2.6°C above pre-industrial levels.
  • Scientists estimate that because of additional methane released and the albedo change of the earth (loss of reflective ice coverage area), global average temperatures will rise by 1° in the next seven and a half years.



  • The Ross Ice Shelf and several other ice shelves in Antarctica collapse simultaneously driving global sea levels up by nearly one meter in two years.


2075- 2076:

  • Rise in sea level causes several wars throughout the South Pacific, Southeast Asia and across the Indian Ocean as populations move away from the coastal regions to higher ground.
  • Low-lying coastal cities in the industrialized nations invest heavily in seawall construction and other infrastructure work to attempt to hold the coastal areas.  The economic impact worldwide is measured in trillions of dollars.



  • Earth’s global average temperature approaches 3.6°C above pre-industrial levels. This temperature change is exactly in line with new climate predictions.



  • Subsurface hydrostatic release causes Greenland’s ice pack to begin a total collapse. Glaciers that had been measured in feet per year are now moving at close to a meter per day in some cases. Scientists estimate that Greenland will be ice free within ten years. This ice collapse will raise global sea levels by six to seven meters.



  • Southeast Asia is overrun by refugees from across the Indian Ocean and South Pacific. Entire nation states have ceased to exist because of the rising ocean water. Many of these nations have spawned pirate economies that run rampant throughout the region. Naval forces from around the world struggle to contain this outlaw activity.



  • Earth’s global average temperature reaches 4.4°C above pre-industrial levels.



  • Pirate warlords dominate the Indian Ocean from Australia to the African Coast, and out into the South Pacific almost to Tahiti. The lawlessness of the region collapses many of the less stable governments of Southeast Asia.
  • The Korean Peninsula and the South China Sea dissolve in the war.



  • Human population falls to 6.5 billion. Famine, water shortage, and diseases brought on by a lack of sanitary management clauses 2.1 billion deaths worldwide over the previous decade. Global food production falls another 10% from pre-collapse levels.
  • Atmospheric methane levels continue to increase as more organic matter in the tundra thaws and decomposes.  As a result scientists predict nearly 1°C rise every five years.



  • Antarctica begins a massive melt-off adding to the already rapidly rising sea levels.



  • “Siberian Flu” outbreak starts. This disease is not actually a flu virus, but rather is the result of an ancient disease that has been released from virtual suspended animation in the tundra. Spreading initially by animals (or birds) this disease decimates cities across the northern tier of Europe and Asia. Some progress is made in protecting North America by quarantining all refugees and other arrivals from the infected areas.
  • Over the course of a year, 960 million people die. Those who are living in famine affected areas have a 60% mortality rate. Those who have managed to maintain a healthier diet die at a 30% rate.



  • Earth’s global average temperature reaches 5.8°C above pre-industrial levels.
  • The United Nations declares Saharan Africa and much of the Middle East uninhabitable. Although this declaration is not a binding declaration, it causes a massive migration of people out of the region.
    Most of the refugees head north towards Europe or Asia. The Russian Federation enforces its borders with troops, so few of the migrants enter Russian-controlled territory. This forces most of them toward Europe.



  • Under the weight of the unprecedented refugee crisis, the European Union explodes into chaos. Nearly 250 million people drive the collective economy of the EU to collapse.
  • The United Nations is incapable of helping in the refugee management, as Europe is only one theater of the worldwide crisis. The UN has already exceeded its credit limits and can stretch no further. European leaders blame the United Nations for mismanagement of resources and withdraw from the organization.
  • Late in the year China and Russia enter into a border war. The Gobi Desert of central China has become decimated by relentless heat, and large portions of the population try to migrate north. This migration is met with preemptive military force by the Russian government, and the situation escalates rapidly across the entire Nei Mongol region.



  • “Eskimo Flu” erupts across North America and Eastern Siberia simultaneously. Although similar to the previous “Siberian Flu” epidemic, this disease has a 60% mortality rate everywhere.
    However, because of its similarity to smallpox, scientists do manage to develop a treatment and contain the outbreak, but not before 1.65 billion people die worldwide.
    Scientists dub the disease “Megapox.”



  • The United Nations disbands as a result of financial collapse and political stress.
  • With no forum available for international arbitration the use of military force escalates around the world. The war between China and the Russian Federation spins rapidly toward nuclear confrontation. The United States, although struggling under its own economic hardships attempts to arbitrate on behalf of the two parties.



  • A heat wave cripples the southwestern United States and over 100,000 people die in a two week period in early June.
  • The power grid from Texas to Oregon shuts down as a result of the temperatures. The federal government orders that much of inland California, Arizona, New Mexico and southwestern Texas be evacuated. The economic cost and logistical effort nearly bankrupts the United States.
  • Power remains out in California and Texas for over a month.
  • The war between Russia and China escalates to the point where a nuclear exchange appears inevitable. In the last minute, military leaders of both countries stage coups and wrest the power for the weapons control from their government leaders. Neither of the two parties will admit to having worked together, but the simultaneity of the takeovers appears to be coordinated.



  • Human population falls to below 2.1 billion.  Death tolls from the wars, famine, and both epidemics of the decade exceeds 4.41 billion people.
  • Earth’s global average temperature breaks 7°C above pre-industrial levels.
  • The United States loses sovereign control of a large portion of its territory as its citizens simply leave for Canada. Border checkpoints in Canada are overwhelmed by US refugees from the south. More people drive into Canada from the US in the first month of the year, than lived in Canada at the point of its highest population.
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