Waterworld: Living with Climate Change

2019, Environment  -  42 min Leave a Comment
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If they're not already impacted by it, people all over the world will soon be forced to tangle with the crisis of rising sea levels. The notion of a world under water might seem like the stuff of apocalyptic science fiction, but it's becoming more of a reality with each passing year. Living with Climate Change profiles the pioneers who are forging ahead to create the infrastructure needed to exist in an underwater environment.

The melting polar ice caps are altering the geography of our planet. If this trend continues unabated, some of our most populous cities could one day become submerged, including New York, Miami, and Mumbai. Dykes and other barriers will be ill-equipped to combat this threat. More ambitious efforts will be required if we are to survive.

In the Netherlands, visionaries are plotting ways not to combat, but to adapt to these dire realities. They're assembling plans for floating architecture fully equipped with self-generating sources of energy. Apartment complexes, businesses, recreational spaces, places of worship, and even elaborate golf courses all have their place in these ambitious, futuristic designs. Car garages will be replaced by personal boat docks. Some of these plans have already been realized.

Other designs allow for underwater settlements. Architects and oceanic enthusiasts dream of enhanced research structures, residential neighborhoods and tourist traps in depths of the sea.

The film presents a myriad of designs that are breathtakingly sleek and imaginative. The experts who are profiled in the film assure us that the technologies exist to fully realize each of these visions. These lofty designs might one day be implemented on a mass scale. It's the only means of dealing with the inevitable influx of hundreds of millions of refugees who have been drowned out of their homes.

As progressive as many of the visions featured in Living with Climate Change are, they also represent a somewhat distressing way of thinking. Are we resigned to the idea that we can no longer reverse the effects of climate change? The film also fails to address more practical concerns, such as the economics of construction and affordability for prospective tenants.

Directed by: Matthias Widter