Collapse and Recovery

In the month before the Shiva impact, the Pacific Rim regions instigated a huge evacuation programme. Billions of refugees from the Pacific Rim poured into central China and the American Midwest. Supplies of food and medicine were swamped by demand and famine and disease stalked the camps. As the UN struggled to divert the asteroid, it had already caused hundreds of thousands of casualties. This, though, was but a foretaste of what was to come.

Dust from Shiva tipped Earth over the edge into ecological collapse. Global temperatures plummeted and crops failed across the world. The majority of Pacific Rim production and farm capacity was totally wiped out. Food riots broke out worldwide.

In 2202 crops failed for a second time. Famine reached Australia, South America, Africa, India and Central Asia. Rioting turned to wholesale looting, and then into anarchy. China, then the AAS declared martial law and most of the other nations soon followed. Semi-organised groups began launching paramilitary attacks on emergency food stores and laying siege to the fortified corporate arcologies. The world fell into chaos as the rule of law collapsed.

Aid soon began to arrive from Mars and the Belt, but little could be done about Earth's food problems.

Many of the rich developed cities rapidly began to rebuild, and corporate arcologies, built from the beginning in secure locations, had never really been affected. Across most of the world, however, a struggle began, not to rebuild but to simply prevent a slide into total collapse. The poor of the world and especially the Pacific Rim continued to grapple with survival itself.

By 2208 Earth's population finally stopped shrinking. The death rate had returned to normal and a new politics emerged to ensure equal access to medical treatments for all Earth's four billion remaining population, and to restrain the population to that level.

In 2216 most of the Shivan dust was deemed to have settled out of the atmosphere and Earth's weather patterns were pronounced ‘normal’ again. Martian and Ceres aid programs were wound up.

The future of Ad Astra

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