International Cli-Fi Day Date in the current year: April 20, 2024

International Cli-Fi Day International Cli-Fi Day, also known as Climate Fiction Day, is observed annually on April 20. It was created to celebrate climate fiction, a genre of literature that deals with climate change and its impacts on the environment and society.

The term cli-fi (short for “climate fiction”) was coined by climate activist and freelance news reporter Dan Bloom in 2007 or 2008. In 2012, he used it in the press release for Polar City Red, a novel by Jim Laughter about a climate refugee crisis set in 2075 Alaska. Polar City Red was the first novel ever to be published and promoted as a cli-fi novel, but the roots of the genre can be traced to the late 19th century.

Probably the earliest novel that can be characterized as cli-fi (or proto cli-fi) is Jules Verne’s The Purchase of the North Pole, published in 1889. A sequel to Verne’s earlier novel, From the Earth to the Moon, it explores the notion of tilting the Earth’s axis to change the climate. Another example of early climate fiction is The Man Who Awoke by Laurence Mannings, a 1933 novel that tells the story of a man awakening from suspended animation every 5,000 years and learning about the changes that have occurred since his last awakening, including climate changes.

American science-fiction author Frank Herbert is considered by many the pioneer of modern climate fiction due to his 1965 novel Dune, which, among other complex themes, explores Herbert’s ideas about ecology and environmentalism. Other novels touching upon the subject of climate change that were written prior to the emergence of the term cli-fi include Carbon Dreams by Susan M. Gaines, State of Fear by Michael Crichton, The Road by Cormac McCarthy, the Science in the Capital series by Kim Stanley Robinson, and the MaddAddam trilogy by Margaret Atwood.

Since the 2010s, prominent climate fiction authors include Paolo Bacigalupi, Octavia E. Butler, Allegra Hyde, N.K. Jemisin, Barbara Kingslover, John Lanchester, Nnedi Okorafor, Richard Powers, Kim Stanley Robinson, Sherri L. Smith, Yoko Tawada, and Jesmyn Ward.

Most cli-fi works are speculative in nature, but they do not necessarily fall into the genre of science fiction proper. For example, Margaret Atwood prefers to categorize her dystopian MaddAddam trilogy as speculative fiction and not as science fiction because it describes things that “could really happen” given the current state of the planet. Cli-fi novels may be set in the world as we know it, in the near or far future, or in fictional worlds experiencing climate change. It should be noted that the main focus of the genre is anthropocentric climate change rather than natural disasters in general.

There are many ways to celebrate International Cli-Fi Day. You can read a cli-fi book, watch a movie that features the theme of climate change, join a cli-fi book club or start your own, donate to or volunteer for an environmental organization that fights climate change, organize a climate change awareness event in your community, write a short cli-fi story, and spread the word about the holiday on social media with the hashtags #InternationalCliFiDay and #ClimateFictionDay.

Remind me with Google Calendar


International Observances, Ecological Observances, Cultural Observances


International Cli-Fi Day, Climate Fiction Day, international observances, cultural observances, environmental observances