Are the actions of mankind provoking human extinction? In this civilized modern era, humans, the extraordinary living creature has grown multi-fold toward extending the research beyond the sky. Are we working for our future?
Drastic climate change, drinking water crisis, and pitfall of natural resources remind us of a solution, but we are yet not seriously aware of the consequences. We are leaping to higher altitudes of technology to build smart cities, instead of forecasting to build nature. It’s like climbing a high mountain without realizing that oxygen deficiency is high as we proceed, and we have to take the precaution before we climb more.
Is the house really on fire? If somebody asks this question, our immediate response would be to reach out of our home, call our family members and enquire them, and ensure that everything is fine and safe; under control. This is because of our mindsets spontaneously react to check our own house. It is casual. However, we should not forget that our home is the earth. It is time to think about our earth. For most of the environmental or societal problems, we might look at the neighbors, politicians, government officials as if we have no responsibility at all.
But, the time for action as the house is on fire has been started long before, and we have very little time left out to lose the race. The only hope is that if we genuinely try together, we could win the race in the final left laps. The question is, are we really bothered about the race? Do we know how much time is left? Are we aware of the chance of winning? Are we ready to give a try?
Our mother earth is on the verge of mass extinction due to several catastrophic threats created by humans. We must explore the real reasons for climate change and disasters to control it. The potential risks to the earth are classified as anthropogenic, which are human-made and non-anthropogenic related to natural sources. In specific, our technological breakthroughs may extend our powers over the natural process and ourselves, so will they scale out the potential consequences radically.
“human extinction is more likely to result from anthropogenic causes than natural causes.” – Future of Humanity Institute
The major anthropogenic threats leading to human extinction are:
- Warfare and mass destruction
- Climate change (pollution and global warming)
- Population growth
- Resources imbalance/Agriculture crisis
- Artificial intelligence
- Experimental technology accidents
- Mineral resource exhaustion
Non-anthropogenic threats are:
- Volcanic eruptions
- Natural climate change
- Cosmic threats
- Asteroid impact
- Extra-terrestrial invasion
- Global pandemic
In 2008, the global catastrophic risk survey estimated the risk probability for human extinction before the year 2100. The recent growth in nanotechnology from biology to machines and artificial intelligence could destroy the living beings intelligently.
|Risk factors||Probability (%)|
|Molecular nanotechnology weapons||5|
|Super Intelligent AI||5|
|All wars (including civil wars)||4|
“It would take 1.6 Earths to produce all the renewable resources we use. And worse, the human population is expected to use the equivalent of 2 Earths of renewable resources per year by 2050.”World Wildlife Fund (WWF)
Every single data regarding the need for resources at present and in the future is scary. Nevertheless, the lethargy of the common people is not at all handled properly. We still use plastic abundantly, waste electricity, and fuel ruthlessly and pollute air and water without a second thought.
Despite the protests held by activists Greta Thunberg, the common people are yet to realize the urgency of interruption to their casual and careless acts. Each individual bears a huge obligation towards the welfare of our universe, and so we need to start the remedial actions right from this moment like reducing the human footprint, saving water, electricity, and fuel resources. Finding and promoting farming and alternative resources to feed the growing population. Stop supplying to our greed and start feeding to everyone’s needs. Our goal must be to develop sustainable resources and provide equitable access to all living beings on Earth.
We still have the hope to win this race, but it is only possible when we are selflessly united.
- Threats by the human footprint
- Sandberg, A. & Bostrom, N. (2008): “Global Catastrophic Risks Survey”, Technical Report #2008-1, Future of Humanity Institute, Oxford University: pp. 1-5.
- Nick Bostrom, (2013): “Existential Risk Prevention as Global Priority”, Global Policy Volume 4. Issue 1: pp 15-31.