Dimensional Coordinates: 614.634.789.112
Divergence Date: Millions of years ago.
Tired of that gentle breeze coming in off the Bay? Wishing that every breath you take be choked with the stench of burning petroleum? Head on over to Refinery World, where the entire Pacific Coast is covered with crude — and the means to convert it into gasoline.
Tough to say where this world went wrong. Preliminary reports seem to suggest an overabundance of fossil fuels along the Pacific Coast, even more so than on Earth Prime.
This deviation didn’t really have too much of an effect in the overall progress of humanity (although the different migration patters of dinosaurs has forced many archaeologists to dive underwater for the choicest fossils) until the Industrial Age. When it was discovered that the west coast of California had easily obtained oil deposits like the ones in Pennsylvania, oil refineries quickly supplanted 49ers long broke after the Gold Rush.
In fact, there was so much oil that pretty soon everything was powered by it. Coal plants shut down as gasoline-fueled ones sprang up. Why power a train by steam when you can do it with gas? Of course, the robber barons were more than willing to indulge in reaping as much profit as possible from the conditions.
Things changed wildly when cars and other internal combustion devices became affordable to the average consumer. Without any need to deal with an OPEC-like coalition, the United States thrived as an exporter and squanderer of petroleum. Economical cars made of light-weight materials never surfaced here — be on the lookout for enormous gas-guzzlers like your grandpa drove.
Air pollution here is horrendous, and the life expectancy of people has dropped precipitously as a result. The refineries, not required to provide any sort of comprehensive health plan, only exacerbate the problem.
Bring a charcoal filter mask.