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Will we survive?

From:  "maba27"

what is our survival chance (some dude says we have a 50% chance to make to 2050)?  will there still be humans in 2100? what will kill us?

Confused and Bored pointed us this fact: 

In response to "How long will we survive?" remember back in 2000 when people were saying that apocolypse was near, we would all die, the Y2K virus would be the end of the human race as we know it. And what happened? Absolutely nothing. We don't know how long the human race will last. For all we know, a hurdling asteroid could ram the Earth tomarrow morning at 3:00 am. But also, we could survive until the sun burns out in a couple million years, but by that time we should have the technology to get off this planet before then. So, once and for all, We do not know.

Edwin wrote us an essay on this beliefs: 

I think the most important thing to realize about this sort of question is "thinking outside the box" or hindsight - do you realize how many times THROUGHOUT HISTORY people have said that world was going to end? In the Middle Ages people prepared for the second coming of Jesus for the year 1000 A.D. (i.e. 1000 years after Jesus first came). And then there was the time the Aztecs thought the Spanish Conquistador Cortez was their god Quetzelcoatl and was going to end the world or bring the city to heaven or something. Hell, for some reason every year someone tells me that they heard "from somewhere" that Nostradamus predicted the world was going to end that year.
Just as the guy said in his question: Why would we die? I mean, with the onset of the modern era of nuclear technologies, there is the threat that we might all blow each other up in some really big war. But now people are generally too afraid of that happening to use nukes or even keep a lot of nukes (at least this is what our governments tell us).
There is the fear that resources (not plant or animal - mined stuff) on earth will run out, and this is a valid fear. For indeed, no matter how much of any resource there is - it's definitely not infinite. There IS however enough of the major resources such as rock and iron that we basically never have to worry about it - seriously, like there is so muched damn iron, copper, tin, etc. in the world. And obviously if one of these resources does run out, we can just reuse (recycle) the stuff we already dug up. And of course plants and animals reproduce, so they can't run out if harvested correctly.
We will however, probably run out of oil (from what I hear). This is because there isn't that much oil on earth (in terms of underground resources) and we harvest and use it at extremely huge rates since it's easy to do so (think about it, it's just sitting there under the ground - all you need to is pump it out and then put it through the relatively simple refining process). And because oil may run out people say there will be an energy crisis. But considering that we can just build lots of nuclear power plants in such an emergency and considering that technology is always increasing, I don't believe that energy would be the problem if we ran out of oil. It would more likely be plastics, organic chemicals and certain other materials we would have trouble with since A LOT of these come from oil. But again, there is the fact that technology is always growing and we can always reuse stuff.
We have to remember that THE HARDER THE TIMES ARE, THE HARDER ANY CREATURE OR CREATURES WILL PUSH TO SURVIVE. And this process is even easier for us humans since we don't actually have to physically evolve over many thousands of years - we can quickly use our brains to come up with technology and change our behaviors. By the time there is a possible resource shortage threat, we will probably have so much technology by then that it won't be a problem - and that includes there being enough room on earth - because it's only going to take so much time before space travel and living on other planets is commonplace. But if there ever is an actual resource shortage emergency or other emergency like that, we'll use emergency tactics to get out of it - just like we and all animals do and have always done and will always do.
I even saw a show on this once - it said that not only are we equipped with technology for survival, but our physiology is ideal for survival, too (the homo sapiens evolved very quickly in response to very harsh times); we reproduce easily and in large numbers since we don't have a mating season and the females menstruate very often and we can have sex frequently (this is how rabbits reproduce so fast, too). We can eat almost anything: meat, which is basically ANY other animal, and a wide variety of plants. We're rather large and strong (at least in comparison to other small meal-sized animals). And we can go on for a long time in times of starvation. But of course OUR MOST IMPORTANT ASSET TO SURVIVAL IS OUR TECHNOLOGY AND ABILITY TO CHANGE OUR BEHAVIOR. We don't have to follow one set lifestyle like other animals, we can just think of something and then do it.

sc0rch shared this rumor with us: 

Supposedly there is a huge comet heading our way and will kill off 1/3 of the planet in 2020(i think). And it's said to hit near Alaska. But if your paranoid you can look at a flood map and find the best spot to seek refuge. but 1/3 of the planet isnt really that many people if you think about it. We'll be fine.

TB pointed out this interesting fact:

Possibly starvation. There are over 6 billion people in the world today. At the current rate of population growth, by the year 2050 the population will more than double. Add in factors like lower infant mortality and increase of the average life of people, feeding a population of more than 15 billion will be hard with diminishing farmable land and potable water sources.
There is no simple answer. At present there are already parts of the world where people are starving to death due to various factors too long and complex to discuss here.

Nick added this thought:  

ya theres a 50% chance that we will live until 2050 just like there is a 50% chance that we will live until tomorrow. when someone says that there is a 50% chance of something it just means that they have no idea because theres a 50% chance of it happening and a 50% chance of it not happening.
 

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