If the migration of the earth's magnetic pole remains steady and unimpeded, Alaska and Canada may find themselves without their most sublime landscape spectacle.
Within 50 years, the BBC reports, the magnetic pole may be calling Siberia its new home. “If that happens, Alaska could lose its northern lights, or auroras, which occur when charged particles streaming away from the sun collide with gases in the ionosphere, causing them to glow.” Fortunately for romantics and amateur photographers alike, this may only be a temporary setback as studies have shown this to be part of a normal oscillation and the magnetic pole may return back to North America.
Frankly, I'd be more interested if the magnetic poles fluctuate much more wildly, that they can migrate all the way to the equator, with the north pole closer to Illinois or Arizona or even Guatemala. And to discover that they have indeed been circumnavigating the world, with their companion auroras seeding myths and creation stories in every corner of the planet, inspiring countless cultures to build elaborate tumuli, ziggurats and desert walklines that precisely forecast these solar electromagnetic storms.
Thousands of years later, Europeans will unearth long lost Mayan and Egyptian hieroglyphs. When they are deciphered, deep in the steamy jungles and blistering deserts — or maybe by then under a mile of glaciers, they will read, in part: “When the sun collides with gases in the ionosphere.”
Percy Bysshe Shelley is then put to shame.