There are other methods of extinction which have been covered in the media, but these are extremely unlikely and/or there is nothing we could do about them. Nevertheless, I will cover them briefly, one by one, to explain why I don't think these are worth considering.

The focus of this website is the likely methods of extinction in this generation.

There are some events which could kill most people by disrupting our food sources and causing worldwide starvation, but we are intelligent and technologically advanced enough that we wouldn't become 100% extinct. These methods include:

  • Large asteroid impact
  • Supervulcanism
  • Cataclysmic climate change, e.g., due to global warming, shifting climates, or severe ice age
  • Collapse of Earth's ecosystems due to extinction of key species in the ecochain
  • Nuclear war
  • Chemical or biological warfare (if not advanced enough to cause extinction)
  • Naturally occurring virus or bacteria severe enough to kill most people
  • Ozone layer destruction
  • Oceanic anoxic event
  • Man-made black hole or similar event in a super cutting edge physics laboratory

There are events in the universe which could wipe out human life on Earth (some of which would wipe out the half our planet facing the event) and possibly all life on Earth and even destroy the planet itself. However, these events haven't ever happened in the hundreds of millions of geological history which we can see fairly clearly, so it's extremely unlikely that it would happen at the instant we gain technological capabilities. Besides, there's nothing we can do about these events, so why worry?

And why worry about the death of our sun billions of years from now, or any other event more than 100 years from now?

These are all distractions from the real and likely causes of extinction.

Unfortunately, many discussions of human extinction focus on some of the above. Since they can be brushed away as something unlikely or which we can't do something about, then the topic of human extinction can also be brushed aside likewise, without covering the main threats, or by burying the real threats into information overload and short attention spans by time wasting grandstanders who can effectively do more harm to the topic than good as regards practical things we should do to prevent extinction.

Some of these "other possible causes of extinction" topics, such as chemical warfare, collapse of ecological chains, and cataclysmic climate change are serious concerns and need to be thoroughly analyzed and addressed for their own reasons. It would be overdramatizing to call these potential extinction events and thereby reduce one's credibility, but they are certainly threats to our lives and economic well being nonetheless.    SiteMap > Extinction Mechanisms > Other Extinction Methods

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Site Map
This website is about
realistic human extinction
threats in our generation,
mainly genetics,
biotechnology, and
It also discusses the
realities of Artificial
General Intelligence
by computer advances
in 20-30 years, the
so-called Singularity.