Because we've always needed reasons to kill each other
Canada’s public broadcaster, CBC, has just finished airing the three-part series Climate Wars, based on the Gwynne Dyer book of the same name. I haven’t yet finished reading the book, but the thesis is easily summarized: If you thought that the effects of climate change only included withering droughts, torrential storms, and general freaky-deakiness, you’ve missed one of the big ones: anthropogenic mass death, or as the political scientists call it, "war."
Yup, on top of all the other things we’ll have to worry about in a melting world, there’s the sad fact that we’ll have more and more reasons to kill each other over dwindling water and food supplies. When you consider that the 20th century was bloody enough as economic and industrial opportunities were expanding, the 21st century is looking mighty depressing if you believe that wars can start over resource scarcity.
You can download the podcasts of Parts I, II, and III of Climate Wars here, though I can’t testify as to how long they’ll stay up there. So give it a listen soon. And do check out the book — like I said, haven’t finished it, but it’s excellent so far.