The ultimate shutdown: what if we could avoid climate crisis by sleeping for a year?

The ultimate shutdown: what if we could avoid climate crisis by sleeping for a year?

When playwright Finegan Kruckemeyer imagined a worldwide circuit breaker for the climate in 2019, he wasn’t expecting it to hit so close to home

In the opening scenes of Hibernation, a minister from Australia’s ruling conservative party updates the parliament of 2030 on the unfolding climate crisis. Regional Australia is riddled with ghost towns, whole nations are underwater, and there’s a flood of climate refugees lapping at our still-shut borders. “Everybody is the victim of what is happening to our planet,” spits the unsubtly named Warwick Joyce (Mark Saturno), “and everybody is the culprit”.

His answer? A miracle sleeping agent first developed for the colonisation of space that can plunge human beings into a deep, perfect slumber. But rather than using the gaseous drug to aid an exodus from our doomed planet, Joyce says, why not force the entire human race to sleep – to collectively take our foot off the gas – for one year?

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