2048, the near future

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Cut from Blade Runner 2049 (Denis Villeneuve, 2017). Overview of the city

It’s 2048. You get out of your fully electric Honda Ion and plug it into a charging station at the edge of the sidewalk. Walking into your apartment complex, your automated clerk/receptionist gives you a package and, from the corner of your eye, you catch a glimpse of a holographic screen with the news: crime is down by 70% since the last four years. It sounds like a dream, doesn’t it?  Well, if we play our cards right, in 30 years we may have much, much more than this.

With the current advances we are making, completely green cities are already in existence. It means it is only a matter of time, maybe a decade or two, before everything is powered by new, renewable and green energy. On top of that, electric cars will probably dominate the roads and maybe even the skies. Mixed with the amount of research, development and innovation going into technology, robotic assistants, limbs and other technologies will also be ready in a not-so-distant future.

But technology isn’t the only thing that matters. Yes, we will probably cure cancer in thirty years, but what about the tumors that plague our society and politics? I feel that in a few decades, a new generation will be in power. A generation that only believes in going forward in any possible way. In thirty years, with luck and hard work, we could solve issues such as poverty, world hunger, racism, sexism and corruption, ensuring a clean, diverse and safe society. We could develop a fair voting system, ensure fair legislations and maybe politicians will learn to compromise so as to keep everything moving.

This sounds like a fantasy, too good to be true. The fact is it’s not. It’s perfectly plausible. However, if we don’t play our cards right, if we let corruption, hatred and war gnaw on our system, we might be in a completely opposite scenario: one where the human race has been decimated by its own kind and where the few survivors won’t survive the nuclear fallout.

Francisco S.