THIS month’s special Earth Day issue of National Geographic Magazine looks to the future of our planet, and asks: where will we be on Earth Day 2070?

The April issue presents varying views of the future, exploring different ways in which the planet can be helped.

Editor-in-Chief Susan Goldbergsaid that the issue “revisits environmental milestones of the last half century” and looks ahead at the world our descendants will inhabit in 2070, on Earth Day’s 100th anniversary.

It looks into climate change and speaks to National Geographic contributor and environmental journalist Elizabeth Kolbert who explains that “climate change is a special kind of problem”.

She points out that “even if we were to start cutting emissions today, the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere and the problem of climate change would continue to grow”.

Author Emma Marris takes a more positive and hopeful look at the Earth in 2070. Acknowledging the seeming impossibility of the climate situation – “even if we’re perfect green consumers [...] we’re trapped in a system that makes it impossible to stop adding to the problem”– she imagines a blue-skied, traffic-free 2070 for her daughter’s adulthood.

“With popular will and the right policies, we’ll have no problem creating new energy and transportation infrastructures, goods made without toxins or carbon emissions, biodegradable plastic substitutes,”she predicts.

This section of the magazine also features an eye-opening timeline of the world every ten years since 1970, including the destructive and reconstructive efforts of humans on the environment.

The April issue of National Geographic Magazine is on shelves now.

Extended coverage can be found online at