Microbiologist: Mankind may be extinct within 100 years

11:21, June 24, 2010      

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Professor Frank Fenner with his portrait at the John Curtin School of Medical Research in Canberra. (Agencies)

According to the reports on Herald Sun and The Australian last week, Frank Fenner, an Australian famous emeritus professor of microbiology, said: "Homo sapiens will become extinct, perhaps within 100 years."

Fenner is a 95-year-old professor of microbiology at the Australian National University and the man who helped eradicate smallpox. The weight of the book he wrote on smallpox is 3.5 kilograms. He also conducted important research about rabbits in Australia. He wrote 22 books on the creature and won many prizes due to this research.

It's not a joke that Fenner predicts the end of the world. He may now be 95, but he's a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science and the Royal Society. And his views on the end of the world, however boring, were still deemed serious enough to publish in Australia's prestigious Higher Education supplement.

"It's an irreversible situation." Blame global warming.

He said human being has entered an era of "Anthropocene", which was firstly mentioned by Nobel Prize Winner Paul Crutzen, in which the human being is the main force to influence environmental evolution under the circumstance of violent interaction between humanity and nature. Especially in the last century, the speed of urbanization increased by 10 times, and the more horrible thing is few generations of human are running out of resources formed in millions of years.”

He also believed that humanity's impact on earth is much worse than the ice age and even a comet's hitting on the planet. Without science and carbon dioxide, ancient people could live for 40 to 50 thousands of years, but current human being cannot make it any more.

"The end of the world I said is trying to draw people’s attention and let them know what a bad situation it really is," He said.

And we talk of other things than the end of the world, and luckily so, because we'll be around a lot longer yet, if we keep our heads - and our hope.

By People's Daily Online/Agencies


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