Novelists have been writing for decades about worlds in which the climate is in crisis. Those stories are becoming increasingly realistic -- in a sense, the future is already here.
Hurricanes tore into Puerto Rico, Texas, Florida and Ireland. Wildfires swept across California. Earthquakes shook Mexico.
These recent spate of extreme weather events make the most analytical among us wonder if science is enough to explain our plight.
Scientists say these events are not new. We're just more aware because more people and property are hurt and our changing climate is making storms and fires more intense and frequent.
Yet, despite what we know about climate science, the nonpartisan Public Religion Research Institute and American Academy of Religion reported in 2014 that about half of America thinks these events are evidence that end times are upon us. In some religions, that number goes up to almost eighty-percent.
What we believe depends on how we view the world -- is a disintegrating planet our fate or do we have some choice in the matter? Take a listen to today's show before you pack for the apocalypse.
- Henry Fountain - Writes about science and climate change for the New York Times. He's the author of The Great Quake: How the Biggest Earthquake in North America Changed Our Understanding of the Planet
- Liz Jensen - British author of eight novels, most recently, two ecological thrillers, The Rapture and The Uninvited. She also teaches creative writing in Copenhagen.
- Christiana Zenner-Peppard - Associate professor of Theology, Science and Ethics, Fordham University. She’s the author of Just Water: Theology, Ethics, and the Global Water Crisis.
Colin McEnroe and Chion Wolf contributed to this show.