Thursday, April 30, 2015
Hawking: Humanity "Won't Last Another Thousand Years" - Is He Right?
In a recent lecture - televised to the Sydney Opera House in Australia, theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking said:
"We must continue to go into space for the future of humanity. I don’t think we will survive another 1,000 years without escaping beyond our fragile planet.”
I believe he is totally correct, except for one thing: his timespan for human survival on this world is far too long. I do not give humans more than 200 years. We are basically too greedy, selfish and short-sighted a species to invest in our own long term (or short term) welfare. We'd rather have immediate conveniences like energy (from fracking, natural gas) instead of clean air, soil and water. NO species can survive very long like that.
Worse, we are unwilling to control our rampaging population growth which is already responsible for the existing inhabitants consuming the equivalent of 1.6 Earths each year. Even a math moron would be able to see this is unsustainable. see e.g.
We are also a stupid species economically. We waste food at a rate that is incomprehensible even as climate change will make any food crops more difficult to harvest or store. We burn up food for fuel (ethanol) when millions could use it. We are so addicted to any energy at any cost we happily frack 100,000 wells a year destroying our most important planetary resource: fresh water- by 4 million gallons per well. At the same time leaving behind unstable pockets that can spawn earthquakes.
No species this short -sighted and stupid can hope to survive very long, and we assuredly won't.
I do not know if there is or isn't some "black budget" program to construct an interstellar space ship as depicted in the science fiction film 'Interstellar'. But if there isn't and none is ready to take off with a crew in the next 75 to 100 years, then humanity is literally for the shit can. And no, in all likelihood we shall go out not in a bang but a whimper. The whimper of too many unable to get enough water or cool air as outside temperatures spike to 120 F or more for weeks, then months. The whimper of shriveled bodies yielding to heat stroke, dehydration and illness.
Leaving behind a mass open grave for billions. The ungodly "heritage" of a species that lacked the sense or basic intelligence to act as stewards for its only planetary home.
Hawking ended that segment by saying:
“I want to share my excitement and enthusiasm about this quest, so remember to look up at the stars and not down at your feet,"
Indeed, because the way we are converting this world into a giant crap hole, you may not be able to look much longer and see a thing!