By the second and third decades after the millennium the world's coastal regions had become depopulated.
The beaches and waters were fouled, the marshland and wetlands engulfed in oil and entangled with shipping wreckage, the shoreline flora poisoned.
People moved more and deeper inland.
There were some holdouts on a few bays and inlets that were spared devastation by favoring currents, but even these had sparse populations.
Those people who remained were subject to predation by roaming bands. But unlike those on the deserts and plains, they had nowhere to run other than into the black sludge-like seas or onto tied up barges where they could make a stand.
Still, some, heavily armed, hung on, if unwisely – the thin and greasy air attacking the lungs, especially of the children.
Regions that once had not more than several people per square mile became crowded. In South America that included the Pampas. Cattle gave way to renegades who butchered the animals for food until they were shot dead and, in some cases, themselves butchered.
In North America villages popped up over the Central Plains states and north into the Dakotas, then Saskatchewan and other Canadian provinces. Fortresses and shelters were built from sod.
National borders no longer existed in Europe and Asia. People crossed unhindered by governments, though not without opposition from bands who robbed and killed the defenseless.
Migrants from the Medittereanean occupied the steppes of Uzbekistan and Kazikstan and crowded those already camped on the Russian Steppes and battles broke out in all those places.
The horse empire in Mongolia experienced a rebirth – as it would on the American plains – and expanded to historic proportions, and waring bands began to think of striking out west toward Europe and southwest toward the Middle East on their small, swift ponies.
Salmon, no longer able to return from the sea and up the rivers or streams to spawn, became extinct, and sea lions and seals, forced helplessly onto the shores by the oil and ravenous sea predators, were feasted on by wild dogs and human scavengers.
Ironically, only inland bodies of sea water such as the Great Salt Lake or the Dead Sea saw little change, except for the once pure air which had been irreversibly fouled. It was, as some realized, all but over.
Causes Steve Hauk Supports
City of Pacific Grove Public Library, Pacific Grove, California; Animal Friends Rescue Project, Pacific Grove; Animal Welfare Information and Assistance,...