2063 - Gwobal Wappa?

S05E01 - Crimes of the Hot "Of course, since the greenhouse gases are still building up, it takes more and more ice each time. Thus solving the problem once and for all." - Documentary Narrator

In 2063, not even a century after the writing of this article, Earth finally gets its shit together and starts caring about climate change. Hooray! Typical of humans trying to solve problems, we attack the issue with space flight, mining, and short-sighted solutions that look more effective than they are. Booooo. Specifically, we mine ice from Halley's Comet and dump it in the ocean, in an effort to lower the overall temperature of the planet.

Accuracy: TBD

Frustratingly, a smarter internet guy than myself already explained how putting comet ice in the ocean not only won't fix global warming, it would actively make it worse [1]. The nutshell is that even if we do it carefully, the amount of CO2 trapped in the ice will create way more of a warming effect compared to the teensy weensy fraction of a degree of cooling that the plunge provides. That doesn't mean that we won't try it of course; humanity is full of bad ideas that later have us saying "if only we had listened to science and reason instead of those sexy sexy Halley's Comet advertisments!". It won't work, but then the show already told us that in 2002; the whole plot of the episode involves trying to find a solution that actually works and isn't, let's be honest, obviously stupid. No, the interesting thing about this particular prophecy is its place in the Futurama timeline.

Did I say the show told us the plan would fail in 2002? I meant 1999, in Season 2, Episode 8: Xmas Story: "Actually [global warming] did [happen]. But thank God nuclear winter cancelled it out" Let's unpack that for a second. In 2063, global warming is a real problem that we're attempting to address. At some point in the next millenium, there is a nuclear winter that blows the Earth's temperature back to liveable ranges. And now here in the year 3000 we're right back to dealing with global warming again! Either time is circular or man's hubris knows no limits, and I'm willing to bet on the species that keeps coming up with new ways to kill itself. What this episode really does is provide some wider context for distaster that comes before the year 2265, and shows that we really only superficially recover from it when it happens. Our ability to come back from the a distaster is only barely stronger than our ability to cause it in the first place.