Stephen Hawking is one of the greatest minds of our time, and he has a grave warning for humanity: Find a new home, or else.
While speaking at the Oxford Union debating society, Hawking posited that humanity wouldn’t last another 1,000 years on Earth alone. As technology continues to advance, and the potential threats multiply on top of it, Hawking said he believes humans need to colonize other planets to ensure our species doesn’t die off. Which, he has a point. All it’d take is one nuclear holocaust and we’re pretty much all kaput.
Here’s an except from Hawking’s comments via The Independent:
"[W]e must ... continue to go into space for the future of humanity. I don’t think we will survive another 1,000 years without escaping beyond our fragile planet … Remember to look up at the stars and not down at your feet. Try to make sense of what you see, wonder about what makes the universe exist. Be curious. However difficult life may seem, there is always something you can do and succeed at. It matters that you don’t just give up.”
Looking to the immediate future, Hawking said we’re probably around 100 years away from being able to successfully set up a colony on another planet (which fits with the timeline of SpaceX's grand plan for Mars colonization). So in the meantime, Hawking cautioned we should be very careful of the decisions we make, and the way we treat this world. Because for now, it’s all we have.
(Via The Independent)