The term climate fiction, or cli-fi for short, refers to any books, films, and TV series related to human-caused climate change.
Cli-fi used to be a small enough genre that it didn’t take much time or effort to read and watch all of the major cli-fi titles. Nowadays, though, there are so many released each year that it’s hard to keep up with them all.
In honor of this growing trend, I’ve decided to post a list of what I consider to be the best cli-fi titles of 2016 and 2017. Since this is my first year posting such a list, I couldn’t resist sneaking in a title from 2015 that’s one of my all-time favorites.
Start your new year off right by checking out these thoroughly entertaining and thought-provoking works of clli-fi. Let me know in the comments if I missed any good ones!
Climate fiction (cli-fi) is a broad genre that includes all fiction that references the climate in some significant way. Most cli-fi explores human-caused climate change and its impact on humanity and the Earth in the present or future.
Telling stories about climate change helps us understand this big, impersonal, long-term trend in more immediate and personal ways. Charts and graphs are great when we want to understand the details of the science, but storytelling really helps us make sense of it all as human beings. It allows us to experience climate change through the eyes of deeply human characters with complex hopes, dreams, and fears that may speak to our own feelings about the realities of climate change. A good cli-fi story entertains us while also helping us figure out what climate change means for us as individuals, communities, and human societies.
Cli-fi is growing in popularity because the consequences of climate change are becoming more obvious and serious with each passing day. More authors are writing cli-fi, and more readers are looking for it. In honor of this growing trend, here are a few fun facts about cli-fi.
1/2986 is an intense and compelling climate change thriller. As the book (and series) progresses, the emphasis is more on the thriller aspect than on the climate. Even so, since the main premise of the plot and setting revolves around a post-collapse scenario explicitly linked to climate change, this novel is an excellent choice for any climate fiction fans who love a good thriller.
New York 2140 is an ambitious novel about what New York City will be like in the year 2140 if human-caused global warming continues unchecked. If you’re interested in New York, global warming, science fiction, political fiction, or all of the above, I strongly recommend that you read this novel.