The scientific part of my briefing was interesting. The researcher in charge gave a presentation on changes in The Sick Land. Elements were familiar, but some of it was unlike anything I've heard before.
According to geological records, The Sick Land was stable until about 150,000 years ago. There's evidence of small fluctuations prior to that, but nothing significant. The Sick Land began to expand, growing at a steady rate until about 200 years ago. At that point, the rate of expansion increased dramatically, as did the volatility of the green zone; fluctuations became commonplace. Recently, the rate of expansion has accelerated even more, to the point that the standard models used for predicting the growth of The Sick Land have broken down. I was told that the main goal of the project is to figure out why this is happening.
After the main talk, a few of the subgroups went through their theories about the expansion. One group think that the changes are simply a product of the more accurate data that are available now, and that the expansion is nothing to be concerned about. Others think that the rate of change is merely chance, and that the acceleration would be invisible on a geological timescale.
I know I made the right decision in joining this group. The expansion of The Sick Land could well be the greatest threat facing the world, and I'm in the right place to make a contribution.