14 Jun 2010

Seven billions?! We're all doomed

Natural Selection, n~

The process by which forms of life having traits that better enable them to adapt to specific environmental pressures, as predators, changes in climate, or competition for food  or mates, will tend to survive and reproduce in greater numbers than others of their kind, thus ensuring the perpetuation of those favorable traits in succeeding generations.
- Dictionary.com

Some scientists will affirm that it took the modern-day Homo-Sapien (human) 100,000 years to evolve from our predecessor. Some scientists affirm the first 'Homo' genus (us) evolved from apes, 6,000,000 years ago.

Estimates approximate we reached the milestone population of 1bn humans on the year 1803. To assume this is all correct, that meant it took us 5,999,793 years to reach the population of 1bn. Then it took us only 207 years to reach SEVEN billion.

The above graph details this very clearly and it's fair to say that the world, which we blindly in our daily scavange live in, is undergoing some radical change.

Start hitting the gym

Natural selection, whether you believe it to be 'law' or whether you believe it to be 'God's will', is evident. In nature, as demonstrated by Charles Darwin in many different ways, it is the smartest, the fittest and the quickest that will always prevail it's existance. Luck plays a part, IE, where you are born - but regardless - if nature decides all the dandelions in a field will perish/flourish - then they will do so.

That is unless, of course, a human decides to kill the dandelions with pesticide, or plant some dandelion seeds and bring further life. In the long-run however, nature will eventually get her way, long when the humans are gone.

And contrary to the graph above, not all of us, but a lot of us, are going to go.

The general concensus for this topic is that we're all fucked. I'm not a tree-hugger but I understand trees are taller than me, harder than me, older than me, better at living than me and given the choice, mother nature would probably rather have 7 billion trees than 7 billion me's.

"It'll never happen to me!"

Peaking between 1348 and 1350, the Black Death is estimated to have erradicated anywhere around 25% of the total population of humans on planet earth. Estimates approximate 60% of those deaths occured in Europe - the place where 'medicine' and 'technology' was most advanced at that time.

Now, we may think ourselves invincible. People will argue against me here - "Look at the technology we have!", "Look at the medicines we have discovered!". While we look back at the 14th century and know just how primitive life was back then - it's fair to say, they probably thought themselves invincible too. Then the strong arm of our mother, like a callous grim reaper, feeding off the decay and stench of death - swept us a crippling blow that saw us deplete by 100 millions in the space of around 2 years.

They were not invincible back then and despite advances, we are not invincible now.

I hate standard form, but I still did this...

Water is lifted from the rivers and streams to the clouds where it rains down upon us. It is collected and drank and will eventually enter the same perpetual motion that has existed for billions of years continues.

Estimates claim we humans use only 1% of all water on Earth, or between 7bn people as a percentage, each that's 1.42857143 × 10-10%

But what about when the population reaches 14bn, 28bn, 56bn. Sure, we could probably create our own rain clouds using gasses and electricity, but really, do you honestly believe the human existance could reach 52 billion people, given the current strain we have already put on our resources?!

Oil is all but run out - in 60 years, there will be no more oil. Then gas will run out. What will fuel the billions of cars then? Hydrogen? Exactly what will we make the hydrogen-storage-tanks from that we haven't yet invented? Sticks? I doubt it.

What about timber? Each year, we currently munch through the rainforests in south America at a rate of an area the size of England every year. There are only going to be so many quarries the size of small countries that we humans will allow before we switch to an alternatives of bricks and mortar. Then what? Horse-shit houses again?

I doubt our successors will settle for horse-shit houses - we won't even do that.

At our current rate - it's simply unsustainable. 

We just about get by with 7bn people - 56bn?! An absolutely laughable figure.

Thank the Lord for penacillin. How many millions of lives has that miracle-drug saved? It cures just about everything!

Already, after 50 years of using mosquito-spray to help combat malaria in Africa, have the bugs began fighting back. Malaria is already changing its genetics to aid it's survival against our war and the mosquitos are becomming immune to the pesticide at an alarming rate.

Alexander Fleming first discovered the properties of Penicillin in 1928. Penicillin is only 82 years old! What happens when common tonsilitis is no longer combatable by Penicillin? It will build its own antibodies to our drug, it's only a matter of time.
What about something a little more sinister like Syphilis? You probably laugh as you read that - but you laugh only because of Penicillin's ability to eradicate it. What happens when Penicillin is useless against Syphilis? We will use another drug to treat it - but what about when that drug becomes useless?

There are only so many drugs we can discover in time quick enough to eradicate disease before disease eradicates us.


The question is - what disease will dwindle us? When will it dwindle us? And how bad will it dwindle us?

And what about humans ourselves?! Already we have through wars, killed over a hundred million of our own kind! If that's what we do to ourselves, what will we do to other species?! (that we haven't yet made extinct).

In the history of planet Earth's known existence, we are merely a blip. Not even a splodge of ink on a page, not a single blade of grass in a football field.

It is my personal belief that we are not here to stay - as much as we'd like to. And unless we take action against;

1) Our consumption of the natural environment, IE, logging, gas & oil, timber and minerals and;
2) The rate at which we reproduce, IE, by effective and enforced means of contraception be it voluntary or involuntary;

Then simply, we're fucked.

Evenin' all.

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