Only A Supervillain Could Stop Climate Change

We need to destroy this civilization to ‘save’ the climate


Thanos having a literal strawman argument when he became a farmer

When I watch Hollywood movies, I root for the villains. They’re the only ones trying to change anything. They’re certainly the only ones thinking big enough to change something on the scale of ‘the climate’. We don’t need superheroes to ‘stop’ climate change. We’d need supervillains.

You Don’t Want This

Speaking as someone who has lost fossil fuels for months at a time (in Sri Lanka’s most recent collapse), you don’t actually want the climate cocaine to stop. Like any addict, we might need to quit, but we actually don’t want to. Without fossil fuels, I’ve struggled to go anywhere, to cook food, and daily power supply depended on the weather. During our months long collapse, Sri Lanka’s (already meagre) pollution dropped dramatically and people suffered unimaginably. That’s the scale of sacrifice required to even make a dent in the general collapse, but you don’t have to imagine, do you? You’ve been there too.

All of us suffered through COVID-19. COVID-19 was the gods showing us exactly how much we had to sacrifice to fight the greater threat of everything-collapse. We had to stop flying, stop buying, stop growing, and just cower in fear in our homes. That is the scale of sacrifice the gods want, and what did we do after this display of power? Promptly forgot about it and got back to business as usual. Instead of repenting, we rushed to ‘recover’, which of course has the opposite effect on the planet. People say they want to stop climate collapse but when the chips are down, they really don't. People just want to feel better about themselves and make some token gestures. They want to have their climate cake and eat it too. This isn’t a judgment. Me too. I don’t wanna give up my shit any more than you.

What Is Required

What is actually required to ‘stop’ (ie, meaningfully blunt) climate collapse? Like Soulja Boy, the Club Of Rome told ‘em in 1972. Those systems thinkers and computer geeks ran simulations of different ‘runs’ of civilization and found that we were completely fucked in all of them except one. They called it the ‘stabilized world’ but I call it, more accurately, totalitarian climate…



Indrajit (Indi) Samarajiva is a Sri Lankan writer. Follow me at, or just email me at