Researchers at Oxford University have compiled a “scientific assessment about the possibility of oblivion”.
The scientists from the Global Challenges Foundation and the Future of Humanity Institute used their research to draw up a list of the 12 most likely ways human civilisation could end on planet earth.
“[This research] is about how a better understanding of the magnitude of the challenges can help the world to address the risks it faces, and can help to create a path towards more sustainable development,” the study’s authors said.
“It is a scientific assessment about the possibility of oblivion, certainly, but even more it is a call for action based on the assumption that humanity is able to rise to challenges and turn them into opportunities.”
Extreme climate change
The likelihood of global coordination to stop climate change is seen by the study’s authors as the biggest controllable factor in whether the environmental catastrophe can be prevented.
They also warn that the impact of climate change could be strongest in the poorest countries and that mass deaths from famines and huge migration trends could cause major global instability.
While the researchers concede that a nuclear war is less likely than in the previous century, they say that evidence suggests “the potential for deliberate or accidental nuclear conflict has not been removed”.
The biggest fact which they say would influence whether one happens would be how relations between future and current nuclear powers develop.
See the rest via The Independent.