It’s been just over a year since we published Patricia J. Anderson’s eco-fable novel Threshold. In that time, there’s been quite a bit of environmental news that has made the book’s message all the more relevant. But one bit of news recently came to our attention that may show just how prescient Threshold is: a Chinese city is planning to launch an artificial moon. That's right, scientists in Chengdu, China are looking at using an artificial moon to light the city streets at night.
Threshold, written in 2016, describes the launch of an artificial moon over the world of Ooolandia, where authorities are eliminating nature in favour of engineered reality. The artificial moon will give Ooolandia’s leaders complete control of the night, but a group of activist animals and humans, including a mindful monkey named Banshooo, discover that the efforts necessary to create and launch it will trigger massive earthquakes and melt the polar ice caps, causing devastation that the world will not be able to recover from.
While Chengdu’s artificial moon plans don’t seem quite as ambitious as Ooolandia’s, and there are doubts it’ll work anyway , there are still concerns about how artificial illumination will impact health, circadian rhythms, and nocturnal wildlife.