Over the years, many people including high level politicians have expressed concerns about the future of our civilization. With so many things that can put civilization in danger, we run the risk of losing it altogether. Reports have been released over the past couple of years highlighting the various global risks that could pose a threat to our civilization.
The factors that pose a threat to civilization include both existing and emerging risks. The Global Challenges Foundation has compiled a list of possible major risks to civilization, which we will look at more detail below.
Some of the risks that threaten civilization
There are number of key risks that pose a threat to civilization, some of which are existing risks. Others are emerging risks that have given experts cause for concern. Some of the key risks outlined include:
- Global Warming: The impact of global warming could be huge, and it will have a particularly harsh effect in poorer places around the globe. It could cause mass deaths, famine, mass migration, and lead to areas of the world becoming uninhabitable.
- Nuclear war: The risk of nuclear conflict continues to be a huge threat to civilization. Whether this is sparked accidentally or on purpose is of no consequence, as in both cases it could mean the end of civilization.
- Large-scale spread of infectious disease: It may seem like the stuff of movies, but the possibility of a global pandemic is very real. This is where an infectious disease spreads across large populated regions or even across the world.
- Collapse of the eco-system: Any dramatic and permanent change to the eco-system could pose a huge threat to civilization. We are part of this system, and if it were to collapse it could essentially lead to extinction.
- Global economic or social collapse: Another serious threat to civilization is economic or social collapse on a global basis. This is something that could lead to a lawless society, chaos, and civil unrest.
— CGTN (@CGTNOfficial) August 21, 2017
- Impact from an Asteroid: Expert state that large-scale asteroid collisions occur around every twenty million years. Ground impact from an asteroid on this level could destroy entire nations and put an end to civilization.
- Major volcanic eruption: Also referred to as a ‘super volcano’, a major volcanic eruption could result in high levels of aerosols and dust being released into the upper atmosphere. This would then block out the rays of the sun, potentially creating the next ice age.
- Artificial intelligence: The move towards the use of AI has become more prominent over recent years. However, this is also listed as a possible threat to civilization due to the risk of humans losing control over machines – similar to what we’ve seen in movies like Terminator. As technology continued to become more advances, this could become a worrying reality.
As you can see, there are many different things that can pose a threat to civilization, and it is scary to think about the impact that they could have.