(WTAJ) — Just how long will humans be able to inhabit Earth? That is the question a group of researchers at the University of Bristol in England think they may have answered.
According to a paper published this week on nature.com, humanity might only have 250 million years left as Earth forms a new supercontinent.
While scientists have warned about climate change, Earth’s temperature, and greenhouse gases/emissions, it was time to see what might actually wipe out humanity with the help of a new supercomputer.
In the paper, the research team said that while the sun will naturally expand as it begins dying, eventually engulfing Earth in about two billion years, human life might not make it past the possible anarchy of what’s been dubbed “Pangea Ultima.”
The simulation comes from the team of scientists feeding it data that’s currently available about Earth, such as climate, ocean chemistry and tectonic plate movement.
The supercomputer predicted that Earth’s tectonic plates would shift and merge over the next 250 million years, creating a new supercontinent that would create chaos with earthquakes, volcanoes, typhoons, and even temperature changes.
“The newly-emerged supercontinent would effectively create a triple whammy, comprising the continentality effect, hotter sun and more CO2 in the atmosphere, of increasing heat for much of the planet,” Dr. Alexander Farnsworth told Unilad.
The paper goes on to say that in the 250 million years while Pangea Ultima forms, the Sun’s energy will increase ~2.5% from what it emits today, making warmer temperatures on Earth and creating vast, uninhabitable areas of the planet.
According to the paper, humanity may not be able to adapt fast enough to deal with the extreme temperatures as we do now through sweating and cooling our bodies, but it’s something that can’t be ruled out.
Food sources are predicted to become scarce as the planet heats and plates shift, making survival difficult for mammal life.
For more information and the methods used by the University of Bristol team, you can click here.