Spoiler alert, season 8 of GOT was a disappointment. This of course comes as no surprise, as viewers have been vocally opposed to the many, many downfalls of the latest and final season. The climate change allegory of GOT suffered a similar fate (spoiler alert) as the Knight King was vanquished with one fell swoop of dragon glass.
While we applaud Arya Stark, the sudden demise of the army that has been building up since season 1 came to a screeching halt with a highly anti-climactic ending.
The Author of the GOT books, George R.R. Martin, has confirmed that the story is a “great parallel” to climate change. For those still catching up or just embarking on a new journey in Westeros, Game of Thrones is a story revolving around 7 kingdoms with many Lords (and one mighty queen) making their claim for the “Iron Throne”, which essentially symbolizes ruling all seven kingdoms in Westeros.
The Knight King is a frozen ice zombie and leader of countless “White Walkers”, all of whom were once human. An ice wall was built in response by men to keep them out of Westeros.
“The same thing is coming for all of us — a general you can’t negotiate with, an army that doesn’t leave corpses behind on the battlefield.”
-Jon Snow, Season 8
Enter allegory for climate change-a force of mother nature that climate deniers attempt to ignore but is inevitably coming.
A battle was waged between the “first men” and the Children of the forest[i], resulting in the destruction of a land bridge called the Arm of Dorne. The ocean rose and swallowed up most of the bridge and created a chain of islands.
On planet earth, glaciers continue to retreat at an alarming rate, thinning continuously in Alaska, Greenland and Antarctica. The loss of land-based ice has been the main contributor to global rising sea levels.
Humans continue to emit an overwhelming volume of greenhouse gas, as the earth is heating up, rising up and flooding our cities. Winter may indeed be coming in the form of a general we will not be able to negotiate with.
In Singapore, a $40 billion project was launched to build an 80-foot seawall to protect the city of Jakarta from rising sea levels. The Dutch have also designed measures to protect vulnerable cities from flooding, as Rotterdam is home to the Global Center on Adaptation.
The “Wall” in GOT is a similar attempt to block out what is inevitably a threat to mankind. When the White Walkers start to surface, the Lords of Westeros continue to perceive them as a myth. Even when Cersei receives concrete proof of their existence, she treats the issue as a trivial smokescreen to distract her enemies while she plots her own schemes.
Washington hosts a variety of notorious climate deniers and have garnered a rather large following. Only 1 in 5 Americans agree with scientific consensus regarding climate change. Secretary Rex Tillerson and President Donald Trump are one of many members of the Trump administration that consistently deny climate change and have vested interests in its denial.
While Northerners and the armies of Queen Daenerys were busy fighting the seemingly hopelessly battle against a hoard of “white walkers”, Arya stabs the Knight King who shatters into pieces. The allegory speaks volumes. While the adults are busy playing politics with climate change, Millennials have been busy trying to reverse it.
At 29, Rep. Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez has been spearheading The Green New Deal , a package meant to increase clean-energy jobs with an overarching agenda to implement carbon-free energy grids by 2035.
In parallel, Worldwide climate strikes have been emerging over the last couple of months as tens of thousands of students skipped class to protest.
"The oceans are rising, so are we," read a sign written by a student in Sydney.
Unlike the GOT finale, the battle over climate change remains an elusive victory, as we idly wait for younger generations to save the planet.
For more news on clean energy and finance, visit Financial Hobby.