Timeline

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2004 World oil production plateaus
2008 A major recession begins, triggering a stock market crash
2011 Protests, riots, and civil war across the Middle East and North Africa result in several revolutions, followed by increasing civil unrest in Europe and North America.
2011 North Korean dictator Kim Jong-Il dies after leaving his bedroom fan on all night.
2014 Russia invades Crimea
2016 Donald Trump elected President of the US
2020 A global COVID-19 pandemic triggers an economic depression. President Trump loses reelection but gets the courts to disqualify the electors of certain key states and is elected by the House of Representatives, followed by riots in most major cities that are put down by force.
2024 Trump cancels the Presidential election and term limits by executive order, remaining in power.
2025 - 2035 Famine spreads in China and parts of North America as lack of oil for farms and transportation, as well as drought and soil loss reduce food supply.
2027 California declares independence, followed later that year by Oregon and Washington.
2035 - 2047 US and China continue to fight proxy wars to control resources in Asia and Africa. Arctic Ocean is now ice-free for most of the year, and melting of Greenland ice sheets accelerates. Cargo ships filled with Chinese, Japanese and Southeast Asian refugees begin turning up along Northern Californian and Cascadian coast.
2025 - 2075 Sea level rises at an average rate of about 6 inches per year, due to Greenland's ice cap melting and the gradual collapse of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet; leveling off after a 25 foot rise. The new nations of Dong Guo and the People's Republic of California control the coastal territory west of the new inland sea. To the east, refugees from the inundated parts of the central valley swell the populations of the surviving cities along the new coastline. Freedom City, at the mouth of the San Joaquin River on the southern shore of the sea, will eventually become the largest of these when the unflooded half of Sacramento to the north is hit by several Chinese nuclear warheads in 2051.
2047 The Sino-American war begins, which soon becomes World War III.
2050 The United States is permitted to use several air and naval bases in California and Cascadia, to defend the coast against an expected Chinese invasion.
July 7, 2051 Nuclear exchange. Hundreds of millions killed on both sides. Dreams of Before
2051 - 2100 The Collapse. The west coast slowly recovers, while civilization is nearly destroyed in much of the rest of the continent due to fallout carried by prevailing winds. Chinese refugees and raiders take control of the southern portion of the People's Republic of California.
2072 The Mormon nation of Deseret is founded. Over the next several decades, it takes control of most of the territory formerly belonging to the states of Utah, southern Idaho, northern Arizona, and Nevada.
2088 The nation of Aztlan is founded. It controls what was formerly southern California and southern Arizona.
2105 Game begins. Much of the current population was around pre-Collapse, and has been kept alive through cloning technology.
map circa 2105