The conference – ClimateExistence / KlimatExistens – has since 2008 brought together scholars, researchers, educators, artists, activists, students and the general public in an engaged discussion and dialogue concerning the existential, psychological, philosophical and ethical dimensions of climate change / crisis / breakdown.

The ClimateExistence conference is a collaboration between the Sigtuna Foundation and the Centre for Environment and Development Studies, CEMUS at Uppsala University and SLU.

Are we now reaching the light at the end of the tunnel, or the tunnel at the end of the light?

Climate Change has become a reality with little room to maneuver. Some talk about changes that would be detrimental to many of the things we have built our societies on. The more-than-human world is being slaughtered all around us in the name of progress and greed. Meanwhile psychologists talk about depression, sadness, acceptance and climate grief.

But, at the same time, youth are rising up, regardless of any abstract notion of hope. The current pandemic also highlights the improtance of lifestyle, solidarity and responsibility. And as we anguish, people, plants, animals around the world are struggling without respite, and have been for a long time.

What would it mean to be in the tunnel at the end of the light? A tunnel can also be a place of refuge, or an escape route. When our eyes become accustomed to the darkness, what is it we will see? What kind of existential questions do we need to ask? How do we stop running from disaster to disaster? Incident to incident?

CEMUS and the Sigtuna Foundation welcome you to the fifth ClimateExistence 2021! Together we will ask the difficult questions, searching in the darkness for glimpses of light to guide or steps forward. Venturing into the blackest black, standing closer to the edge, stepping into the void.

I want to stand as close to the edge as I can without going over. Out on the edge you see all the kinds of things you can’t see from the center.Kurt Vonnegut

When: August 12-14, 2021

Where: The Sigtuna Foundation, Sigtuna Sweden

How: For more information and updates, see www.climateexistence.se


Är vi vid ljuset i slutet av tunneln, eller tunneln i slutet av ljuset?

Klimatförändringarna har blivit verklighet och innebär redan nu förödande konsekvenser för både människor och den mer-än-mänskliga världen. Det finns inte mycket tid eller utrymme kvar att hålla temperaturförändringarna på en relativt låg och säker nivå. Samtidigt engagerar sig de unga, utan att nödvändigtvis tala om hopp. Den pandemi vi går igenom, sätter dessutom ljuset på en mängd frågor kring livsstil, solidaritet och ansvar. Medan vi funderar kämpar redan många runt omkring i världen med effekterna av klimatkrisen och har gjort så under en lång tid. Vad betyder det att vara i ”tunneln i slutet av ljuset”? Kanske kan en tunnel vara en flyktväg? Vad får vi syn på när våra ögon vänjer sig vid mörkret? Vilka existentiella frågor måste vi ställa och hur upphör vi med att springa från katastrof till katastrof, incident till incident? Klimatexistens arrangeras för femte gången av CEMUS och Sigtunastiftelsen i samverkan. Vi välkomnar alla för att mötas över gränserna för att tala om några av vår tids största utmaningar!

Video summary of ClimateExistence 2018


Just how long the ecosystems of Earth will be thrown into flux and disarray from anthropogenic climate change also depends on how much more of that change we choose to engineer – and perhaps how much we can manage to undo. But warming at the level necessary to fully melt ice sheets and glaciers and elevate sea level by several hundred feet promises to initiate rolling, radically transformative changes on a timescale measured not in decades or centuries or even millennia, but in the millions of years. Alongside that timeline, the entire lifespan of human civilization is rendered, effectively, an afterthought; and the much longer span of climate change becomes eternity.David Wallace-Wells, 2019, The Uninhabitable Earth - Life After Warming, page 203