A Doomer’s Manifesto

  • I understand that life is a terminal illness. Every one of us will die. That doesn’t mean I can’t laugh and love, celebrate and mourn, make plans, have goals, enjoy sunsets and the company of friends.
  • I understand that humanity has a collective terminal illness. Here and now, not in some unimagined future. It’s called climate change, and I do not believe it will end well for the natural world, or for us.
  • I am saddened by the countless losses in the natural world. Whole species, whole ecosystems gone forever.
  • I am saddened by the loss humanity’s achievements. All our science, all our art, all our literature, and philosophy.
  • I am saddened by the prospect of what will happen to us. Of the calamities to come as the planet grows inexorably hotter. The desperate migrations, the wars, the suffering and death that will result.
  • I am saddened by the suffering already taking place.
  • I understand that sadness is not depression. Nor is it an excuse for inaction. I support science, education, helping others and environmental activism.
  • I am want actions, not words. I don’t care about who or what is to blame for our current dilemma. I care only about doing what we can, now, to reduce the harm and lessen the damage.
  • I do not believe in the promises of so-called ‘green’ technology; that hydrogen fuel cells, nuclear fusion, geo-engineering or electrifying everything will save us. They are just excuses for not acting now.
  • I am curious about the future. I want to know the consequences of climate change; what is likely to happen, what the time-scale might be.
  • I am invested in education and scientific discovery. I want to find the best roadmap to follow as the planet dies.
  • I am conscious of my own actions and their impact on the world.
  • Above all, I recognise that I am part of the human family on a dying planet, and that “doomer” is just a word for someone who is paying attention.

With acknowledgements to Eliot Jacobson, Ph.D., ‘On Being a “Doomer”

“No one individually, no society and no other generation of humans on earth has ever had to process events of this magnitude or attempt to express thoughts like these in the context of overwhelming scientific evidence backing this view.”

Eliot Jacobson

My generation were diners stuffing ourselves senseless at the Restaurant of Earth’s Riches knowing—while denying—that we’d be doing a runner and leaving our grandchildren a tab that can never be paid.

David Mitchell, The Bone Clocks

The graph at the top of the page comes from Jacobson’s Twitter post on 10 June 2023. The darker the blue line, the older the reading.

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