The World in 2050


Three giant steel fingers stood out on the dark grey skyline. An orange fuzz surrounded the pale yellow sun as it sank below the horizon. An aerocar shot along the elevated track which led to the three flats, each a mile high. This area might have been a forest, or even swampland, sixty or so years ago. But, thanks to technology, it had been cleared and the ground was an enormous field covered in artificially grown grass, which lasted years longer than the stuff that used to be around. In the flats, everything is provided, shops, playrooms, laundries, houses (some with gardens), and even a nylon football and cricket pitch. Water is obtained from the fields, when it rains the water is drained away, underground, and purified, again underground. The electricity comes from the coastline, where many nuclear power stations, safely depositing atomic waste in the sea, provide all the city’s needs. High speed lifts carry people to different levels at speeds of up to a hundred feet per second. Every morning the people are checked to see if they are healthy by automatic doctors, which then give the person any attention he may need if he is ill. All this is possible because of modern technology. It is a marvellous thing. Already man has landed on Venus, although it was a wasted trip, and nearer home many things have been done. Even now, point zero zero zero zero zero zero one of the earth’s atmosphere has been completely cleared of pollution and there is a rumour that from one place in America it is actually possible to see blue sky.

The greatest thing that any person can want to see is the Scientific Museum. This is a gigantic building with one thousand different floors. The museum is full of stuffed animals and for each animal there is a reel of film. For instance, for the sparrow there is a film showing a sparrow flying, but many people who visit the museum have said that the film is a load of rubbish. They do not believe that birds which are so clumsy can fly, because the planes fly without flapping their wings and they are very streamlined compared with the birds. There are no such things as zoos because there are no animals to put in them. The only animals left are a few kinds of eatable fish bred for eating and cats and dogs. Every family has either a cat or a dog, this being the only reason that they have survived. The oil and coal reserves of the world have been long since tapped and therefore electricity is the only power left.

Twenty years ago we had what the histories called ‘The Age of Pollution.’ In these days all of the creatures of the earth became extinct, that is all but the cats and dogs. There were many deaths in those days, half the population of the world in fact, and this was because of the great shortage of gas masks. Prolonged breathing of the earth’s atmosphere was fatal, and to swim in the river was instant death. This period lasted for four years, and the problem was eventually solved, at the cost of blue skies. A great project was started to warm the atmosphere of the earth, so that it rose, and to replace it with clean air. When the polluted air was high enough it was cleaned by a liquid, which was sprayed onto the earth from orbiting satellites. This cleaned the atmosphere but increased the cloud level so much that the entire earth was surrounded by clouds. The liquid also had some strange effect on the colouration of the clouds and turned into the dark grey colour which they now are. We have technology and progress to thank for our position. Whatever other people say it is true that we would still be wandering about in caves if it were not for man’s curiosity and intelligence. In the future, life will be easier. That is certain.

16½/20 Good

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