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03/08/2017

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Ed

OK, neither of these comments address the main points, but I have read several Kim Stanley Robinson books and have lived in New York.

First, "science fiction" has never had much to do with science. The genre is about putting people in fantastic settings in order to make the usual comments about how humans interact. Science fiction is a subset of fantasy that uses technological gizmos. It wound up getting more credit than it deserves because one author, Jules Verne, used tech that in some cases actually wound up happening (and Verne's best book, "Around the World in Eighty Days" is not a science fiction book, except that Verne wrote it).

Robinson's most famous series of books involve the terraforming of Mars, which is actually impossible because the planet lacks a magnetic field. Interplanetary travel, a common scifi trope, is impossible due to the physics around the speed of light. Robinson's other books feature things such as a campaign rally at the North Pole, an underground party at the Vostok base in Antartica, and so on. He likes fantastic settings that are really impossible if you think too hard about it.

A good part of New York City is built on really high ground pushed there by the glaciers, so its less vulnerable to sea level rise than you would think given the place is built on a bunch of islands. Its less vulnerable than London, which did build a big wall to keep out the sea. A combination of a Thames-style barrier, abandoning the lower lying parts, and moving things more uptown will probably do the trick. If not, you will you just see the city abandoned, lots of cities have been abandoned in history when ecological changes made them just uneconomical. You won't get people traveling between cities on boats, though.

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