What people are capable of when pushed to the limits? In ultimately frozen world, people develop steam-powered technology to oppose overwhelming cold. The society in its current form becomes ineffective and it has to change in order to survive.
What does this change mean? What is culture when its morality stays in the way of existence? Think about how survival in the end may leave us different beings. If worse, better, stronger, weaker or, last but not least, more or less humane - that is debatable.