Will the future world be more rural?
Predicted in 2014 reading:
- 2034 --
- Man and dog by big river – that rural wilderness feeling. (Jeanne Mayell)
- Stress coming up from the land in summer. (Jeanne Mayell)
- 2050 - More rural living. (Andrew Posey)
- 2037 -- Tom Sawyer images – return to rural living in America. (Jeanne Mayell)
- 2080 -- U.S. becoming more rural again. (Jeanne Mayell)
I thought it would happen because of coastal cities being flooded. But it's more likely going to happen to avoid heatwaves in cities.
The worst place to be during heatwaves is in a city because asphalt and concrete buildings absorb heat and don't cool down enough at night to give people the relief from heat that their bodies need. I expect that cities will increase efforts to weave heat reduction into their building codes but it may not be enough to make it safe for people to live in cities in non winter months. So this may be the reason why I saw so much rural living after 2030.
In NYC, they have an anti-black roof ordinance, and people around the world are adding plants to the outside of buildings. I did have a vision of:
- 2050 -- Green growing on the sides of tall sky scrapers. (Jeanne Mayell)
Others had visions of green, green, green being the preferred direction that everything goes.
Heatwaves are probably going to be a factor in the industrial world's ruralization, but I think we should also be open to possibility that global culture will be undergoing some fundamental shifts in the decades to come. I also recently read through the long-term predictions posted on this site, and I was struck by two enduring themes: that people from all walks of life will be involved in food production, and that there will be a grater emphasis on small-scale, human centered communities (at least in the US).
As climate change, topsoil loss, and insect depletion (particularly of pollinators) ramps up and disrupts our eating habits, more people will be induced by high food prices to grow food on their own (Jeanne, I'm thinking of that vision of the $50 apple you've mentioned before). Despite urban agriculture initiatives, more people may decide that it's easier to live on and farm a plot of land in the countryside (or better yet, join an intentional community where land is owned in a cooperative arrangement).
The inevitable failure of growth based monetary systems may also push people to question the social atomization and bare-knuckled competition endemic to urban living. Coupled with our ecological crises, we may be deciding that rural living is much more nourishing and conducive to human-to-human contact than living in a concrete jungle. In general, as E.F. Schumacher details in his book Small is Beautiful, networks of small communities are much more resilient and stable than big cities or nation states. Perhaps dangerous heat waves will be the final straw atop a long list of drawbacks for people who are reconsidering the wisdom of city living.
@Carmen: About 7 years ago I started thinking deeply about what path technology would take in the next 25 years. The vision I kept getting in my mind was that of an airy, sun-filled library. About half the people in the library were contentedly reading books while the other half were tinkering with contraptions that looked like they came from the notebooks of Leonardo da Vinci and Nikola Tesla. I got the sense that by the mid-2030s, a renaissance in "old knowledge" would be in full swing. People would be unearthing and finessing ideas and modes of knowing that had previously been marginalized by the Western reductionist worldview. In turn, these "old" sciences (things like indigenous knowledge and free energy technology) would be synthesized with our current digital innovations and give rise to a whole new class of technology. There was no indication in my vision that this paradigm shift would be dependent on the dominance of cities.
Disclaimer: I'm not a psychic or remote viewer. This is just brainstorming and speculation from current available information.
Other than heat, the other thing I can think of that could drive people out of cities is air pollution. We're not there yet, but imagine most world cities having air like Beijing, or the 19th century London smog. It's harmful, not just for the lungs (asthma), but some of the smaller particles cross into the bloodstream, triggering inflammation, and all kinds of problems, from blood vessel microinflammation to organ damage (kidney, liver, pancreas, brain).
The big move to cities in our era occured during the industrial revolution, because cities are where all the jobs are at. Around WW2, we had the green revolution, where mechanization reduced the need for manual labor in agriculture, so that accelerated the rural exodus. At some points cities got too crowded, noisy, and polluted, so we have suburban sprawl. At present, I think people are in cities mostly because of jobs (and certain conveniences, like malls and other amenities crammed in close vicinity). If that suddenly disappeared (maybe everyone worked remotely, or all consumer goods were 3-D printed), or something disrupted the way food goes from country to city, that could change the balance back.
When you plan for cities and suburbs, you really disrupt the environment. Not just cutting down trees, destroying habitat, and chasing away wildlife. All the plumbing, piping, electrical, sewers, concrete, asphalt you're sticking into the ground (which Jeanne suggests may take a thousand years to clean up). Jeanne once said that off-grid living would be the new frontier. There's people trying it out. Solar for energy, self-contained water collection and filtration systems, ways to collect and compost or recycle waste. All built into a single home unit (or group of homes). It's just that the technology isn't quite on a scale where it can be deployed for tens or hundreds of millions yet. But if it's there, we could do a reversal from cramming thousands into concrete skycrapers. It could be a trigger for the next innovation wave. The current distribution system centralizes a lot of functions necessary for modern life (water, electricity, waste treatment, food production and distribution). If we can make them self-contained, and deployable on a smaller scale maybe people can space out a little. Kind of like back in the 1800s where they had the Homestead Act. Each migrant family gets a free acre of land from the government, if they just work it - Little House in the Prairie style*. (I wonder if that's why a lot of crops in the midwest look like square patterns today on satellite images).
I think details of how future rural systems are set up would be excellent remote viewing targets. Jeanne sees a lot of greenhouses. I wonder if unpredictable or hostile weather conditions would be the reason why stuff can't be grown outdoors. Or airborne plant pathogens.
* For those not in the US who want the quick lowdown on what happened afterwards: overworking the land led to the dust bowl (the soil conservation program later reversed this). When the Great Depression hit, small farmers couldn't make ends meet, so they sold their farms and moved to the city. All the tiny farms got gobbled up and consolidated by large corporations, which is close to the current state of things.
2050 green growing on the side of tall skyscrapers
it's already here: google singapore green buildings
about the $50 apple vision (that caught my attention too), may I offer an alternative interpretation: maybe by then the dollar is worthless. It'd help if you had something to compare with. If pencils are 50¢ and apples $50 you can be certain food prices skyrocketed. But if apples are $50, but pencils are $25, then it may mean the dollar tanked (hyperinflation?) But because I'm no remote viewer, and with a lack of additional data, I'll stick with Jeanne's interpretation, as she's more likely to know the context of her vision.
If Jeanne is correct, I wonder if everyone should head out to their nurseries and buy fruit trees to plant (I would if I had the $$, land, and know-how). Because a lot of the folks I see at Home Depot are buying flower and decorative plants instead.
I liked reading about your thoughts including the $ and apple as it brought an interesting perspective to the conversation.
I have also thought about fruit trees. When we originally bought our home 25 years ago, it was newly built so the back yard was ours to design. We planted 10 trees in our back yard, 3 of which were citrus trees. We use the fruit every season, especially the lemon tree. I will juice the lemons and pour juice into ice cube containers to freeze and take out what I need for cooking throughout the year. We also have a small vegetable garden in the backyard which we have begun raising crops in again. It is a process as my (our) green thumb isn't always green. ( The wildlife in our yard love the garden as well. ) I have pondered planting non-citrus fruit trees over the past few years. I think it will be good to have some variety and well, because who doesn't enjoy fruit, especially grown without pesticides?
The other trees in our yard help in other ways. First, they shade our house which is especially needed here in Arizona during the oppressive summer months. They cut down on our electricity bill which helps our wallet and our environment. Second, all of the bushes and tress in our yard proved a rich environment for wildlife. Daily I see/ hear humming birds, doves, quail, boat-tailed grackle, kingbirds, blackbirds, rabbits, and butterflies . Frequently there are woodpeckers, mocking birds, raven and occasionally owl, duck and hawk. There are others but I am still learning the names of the birds I see. Since we have so many trees and bushes, our yard is often full of wildlife. We would likely have more but we have a dog who loves to chase the birds when I let him out. He is a Sheepadoodle, (part Old English Sheepdog and part Poodle) so, he tries to herd them and then catch them. Birds don't herd well ha ha, but when it is extremely hot, they can be slower to take off in flight. He can actually catch a few in the summer months if they aren't careful.
I am also more mindful of how I use water and will reuse it on occasion for plants like leftover cooking water and often turn it off mid shower during warm months while washing my hair. Again, it is a process, (baby steps) as this is a newer thing for me. I am trying to make it more of a habit. In Arizona, water is life and it will be in less abundant as time goes on. I want to respect and conserve what we have now.
I also know the luxury of taking "baby" steps will not be an option soon. Some days I think I am "awake" and yet others I realize I am still "waking up". We do have some grass in our back yard. Not a good thing for water conservation, but it cools down the surrounds in the summer, dramatically, and our wildlife spend much or their day on the grass and near the grass. So, for now it stays.
Lastly, I am beginning to notice something here in Arizona. I think it is getting more windy. The trees seem to be in near constant motion nowadays. Gentle breezes to more gusty wind seem more frequent.