Can we prevent the end of the world? – by Martin Rees, Astrophysicist

Can we prevent the end of the world? Martin Rees Astrophysicist

Martin Rees Astrophysicist
Lord Martin Rees, one of the world’s most eminent astronomers, is an emeritus professor of cosmology and astrophysics at the University of Cambridge and the UK’s Astronomer Royal. He is one of our key thinkers on the future of humanity in the cosmos. Full bio

A post-apocalyptic Earth, emptied of humans, seems like the stuff of science fiction TV and movies. But in this short, surprising talk, Lord Martin Rees asks us to think about our real existential risks — natural and human-made threats that could wipe out humanity. As a concerned member of the human race, he asks: What’s the worst thing that could possibly happen?  View video below:

This talk was presented at an official TED conference, and was featured by our editors on the home page.

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  • de Castro compton  On 09/01/2014 at 6:52 am

    Martin Rees is an eccentric intellectual who dreams while awake….a genius in his field of study.
    Master of his own universe….visionary.

    However my only critique is his suggestion on ‘solutions’
    and ’causes’ of the dilemma our world faces….
    Will the end be man made or natural….
    If it began with ‘big bang’ will it end with ‘big bang’
    in which he expresses the ‘fear’….

    Personally I support the natural thesis of ‘the end is nigh’
    Big bang end but not man made….
    Our planet hit by meteor triggering closer solar orbit !

    In our solar system the earth orbits the sun equidistant
    from its center…..if this circling was minutely influenced
    by a powerful enough meteor voila ! We don’t circle the
    sun ‘equidistantally’ but ‘ovally’…..
    Isn’t the deserts of our planet shifting north south annually…global warming et al…
    For the records the Mediterranean sea was once a desert….

    My commonsense approach to scientific speculation.


  • Albert  On 09/01/2014 at 11:22 am

    Never heard of this guy. Maybe he has not written as much as Stephen Hawkins the Oxford theoretical physicists and astronomer. Hawkins is an Atheist, but one of the best minds on the subject. Referred to as the devil’s disciple by religious groups. He argues that the universe could not have been created by a creator because before the big bang there was no time. Everything was frozen. No time no creation. The Catholic scientists are scratching their head to find a counter argument.
    Hawkins also claim that if a large enough meteorite was to hit one of the other planets, orbiting the sun in our solar system this could disrupt its orbit. In turn this would disrupt the orbit by our earth, because of the effect on the magnetic forces involved and bingo, maybe the results you said.

  • de Castro compton  On 09/01/2014 at 12:28 pm

    Then its not …’the end is nigh’ but ‘the end is natural’


  • Cliff  On 09/04/2014 at 1:53 pm

    yes. SOON.

  • de Castro compton  On 09/04/2014 at 3:04 pm

    Just hope its ‘instant’….! Big bang mark two.. Ha ha !

  • de Castro compton  On 09/06/2014 at 5:47 am

    Not long to wait my friends..
    The earthquake will trigger the man made nuclear meltdown
    and ‘voila’….big bang mark 2…ha ha

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