Slideshow shows a world without us

A World Without USOne of my favorite settings for science fiction is after the fall of Man. You know the one, where cities are deserted, weeds growing up through the streets, etc. Occasionally there are humans eking out a living, but they are no longer dominant. Yeah, that kind. Well, a book that came out recently, The World Without Us, imagines what would happen environmentally if humans just vanished from the face of the earth. I prefer humans to still be around in my stories, but this concept is fascinating.

If you scroll down on the website’s main page, you’ll find an artist’s rendition of New York between 2 days and 15,000 years after the disappearance of humanity. According to the book’s author, the subways would flood after only three days, after twenty years streets would collapse and rivers would form in the space left over.

Meanwhile, I’m waiting for the post-nuclear holocaust genre to pick back up.

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2 thoughts on “Slideshow shows a world without us”

  1. I saw Weisman on his book tour, and he gave a fine speech about the prospects we face. One amusing moment was when some of our local angry hippies (we’re in Portland) challenged him to become a vegan. He politely demurred.

    The book is excellent and yes, great fodder for post-apocalyptic writing. Which is why I bought it!

  2. Great! I saw him on The Daily Show, as well as listened to him on one of my podcasts, think it was “Science Friday” on NPR. His main point is that everyone gets so worked up about us and what we are going to do, that he just decided to take ‘us out of the equation.

    He’s got a good schtick going, and it sounds like he did quite a bit of research to get things right. I only wish these kinds of guys would make it over to Japan! It’s so hard to find conferences on these (at least in English).

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