Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Next 50 years is bleak.

  1. Feb 12, 2004 #1
    Fossil fuels are going to become extremely expensive, a depression will set in which we will never leave. Unless we start building acres and acres of solar, hydroelectric dams, geothermal and well stocked nuclear power plants now, we will be unable to support all but the most essential of industries. Though coal will last another 200 years.

    Of course this may trigger a world war. In fact, gulf war 2 may even be a precursor.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 12, 2004 #2
    Actually, world war will probably not occur. Nations with a nuclear deterant will most likely stock pile crude oil to support their nuclear deterant for as long as possible and crude oil will never run out 100%.
     
  4. Feb 12, 2004 #3
    There will not be WWIII even with madmen like Bush in charge. "Terrorism" - yes. Imperialism and occupation - yes but hopefully less and less. WWIII - nearly impossible given the economic and political landscape.

    Fossil Fuels will probably actually decline in price over the long term, but their prices relative to clean alternatives will increase. Taxation of fossil fuels which should already be in place, may artificially increase the price, while decreasing the real price further.
     
  5. Feb 15, 2004 #4
    Maybe you are right and the depression will not be severe enough to keep Humanity a type 0 civilisation for eternity. As long as there is a healthy surplus of energy and a libertarian government willing to waste mega watts of energy per day to produce hydrogen to blast things into space, there is a long term future. As for the rest of the prime of my life, I am unsure as to the extent the increase in the expense of fossil fuels will have on the quality of my life.

    http://www.latinpetroleum.com/printer_2818.shtml
    http://www.oilcrisis.com/curves.htm

    If crude oil conglomerates happen to be corrupt and have been lying to the mainstream media, we will experience an apocalyptic oil crisis in the next 5 years. If we not, modern civilisation will undergo a constant depression as it's industries are forced to make the shift to coal, nuclear and renewable energy (there will still be enough crude oil to make kerosene to fly uranium around the world etc, this will just be extremely expensive) at least by 2015 and at most by 2020.

    So we have 11 years to make something of our lives before we are plunged into depression.
     
  6. May 18, 2004 #5
    well looking at the current trend,in 50 years..

    -paper money would dissappear
    -books would also dissappear
    -languages or even writing will eventually dissappear.well simply be using our heads to understand each other.a brain communication
    -fossil engines also would dissappear
    -structure of society will eventually transform to smthing else.but i dont know what
    -disease.i dont remember when i got sick last.its like our bodies are becoming more resistant to disease and infection
    -did i mention that sound and movies are going down if not dead.i dont know if movies and music will live for 50 more years.
    -and lastly,creativity would be the main thing as new ideas 'unexpectedly' come around :wink:
     
  7. Jun 5, 2004 #6
    tabloid, you have been watching far too much star trek. You may be correct as to the money thing, we may get some kind of card with all details on and is accepted anywhere, but books wont go. I love book, and lots of people do. Computer screens seem so much harder to read from than books do! That languages statement is ridiculous. If your suggesting the entire, what will be 7 billion people of earth will have learned to use there heads telekinetically, then its crazy! The world may have slightly moved towards one languages, like english for example, but id be even sceptical about that!

    Fossil engines however may go. There on their way out now with electric stuff and hydrogen powered stuff on their way in! The Human body's are becoming less resiliant to disease at the moment, anti biotics are proving less effective daily! Some things like cancer are becoming more curable, but virus' and bacterial infections are surely not getting any "better". I couldnt comment about the "sound and movies" thing, but id hope they dont go. Sci-Fi fires creation and thought inside many people, not to overstate it, but TV has fueled science to a degree.

    returning to what the origonal post was. I hope the next 50 years arent all as bad as you say, ive gotta live in the next 50 years :P We wont run out of power. Anti-Matter will be substancially developed overthe next 30-40 years, fusion is on the brink of being used as a feasable supply (next 10 years i hear *rolleyes*). And even if all of that fails, fission power is by far a good source of energy! Nottingham where I live, is one of the UK's biggest city's, and we run it all off a coal power station. A fission power station is far far far more efficient! I couldnt speak for america though, i hear they had a big blackout in NY this year, so maybe they could do with a few more stations! :P

    Oh, and due to global warming, us brits will finally get the sun we deserve :D:D
     
  8. Jun 6, 2004 #7
    please this aint about startrek.all im having is a sense of time;i know what was there 50 years back,and i know what is there now.and with that i can 'try' (call it a vision if u will :rolleyes: ) to imagine what 50 years from now would look like.
    im still practising on my brainpower thing;like i would simply look at you and we can simply communicate by looking at each other--no talking save your breath please! :approve:
     
  9. Jun 7, 2004 #8

    BobG

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    I would disagree about humans becoming more resistant to disease and infection. They might be slightly less resistant since humans are not exposed to as many diseases as they used to be, but the difference is so small that the human resistance to disease could be treated as constant (human species don't evolve that quickly). Health, worldwide, increases as resources (food, medicine, hygeinic practices, etc) are better distributed (the greatest increases in health came from better practices of hygiene such as washing your hands between slopping the pigs, cooking dinner, etc.). In the civilized world, as Bunting noted, the over use of antibiotics has resulted in diseases that have developed their own immunity to our antibiotics, which will slow increases in health.

    Fossile fuel engines for automobiles won't disappear within the next 50 years in the United States. Everything else may have converted to some alternative fuel in order to free up fuel for cars, but the United States economy still relies too heavily on the automotive and automotive related industry to withstand too quick a change to the automobile culture (this is why taxes in Europe have driven gasoline prices up around 4 to 5 dollars a gallon and gas prices in the US have remained extremely cheap - bottled water is more expensive than gas in the US). Hopefully, the US will have transitioned a lot further towards something else as its main economic driver (or else we're in big trouble), but I don't think we can eliminate fossile fuel dependence in just 50 years.

    Creativity and technological development still has a ways to go before they peak, but both might hit their peak within the next 50 years. Advancements in communication have been the prime driver for the explosion in technological advancements. We still have some work to do in organizing and making pertinent information retrievable when we need it, but I don't see the pace of technological development accelerating endlessly.

    I agree the structure of society (culture) will change. It has to. We transitioned out of the old industrial age culture long ago (well, at least more than 20, 30, 40 years ago) and we haven't settled into a new stable culture. Historically, civilizations make the transition to new stable culture or fall back into an old stable culture (nomadic hunter-gatherer cultures, agricultural city-state cultures, etc.). Obviously, a fall back to one of the old type cultures would entail some kind of traumatic collapse. Fifty years isn't exactly a make or break time to establish some kind of stable culture, but society and culture will constantly undergo rapid changes until it does stabilize.
     
  10. Jun 18, 2004 #9
    Bush? Imperialist? lol
    Where was your criticism when the British maintained an empire in which the sun never set on? I did not hear any SWISS condemning NAZI GERMANY, one of the most expansionistic regimes in history, in fact I remember the SWISS actually COOPERATING WITH NAZIS. You are not one to speak about such subjects.
    Bush a madman? I guess defending yourself and the people you represent has become a madman's pursuit.

    WWIII, we are in it right now even if you do not you accept it. The Next 50 years will decide whether we live in peace or in fear. There is true EVIL today, just look at ZARQUAWI and KIM JONG IL. If we do not confront it and destroy it then we will live in fear for a long while. However, if we are successful and destroy EVIL then that will usher in a true HEAVEN ON EARTH.

    Fossil Fuels will not run out in 50 years. The current estimate is 200 YRS and is always increasing! Yes, increasing because we can now get to oil that is in inhospitable places and oil that is deeper. In fact 100 years ago, I doubt anyone thought that we would use floating platforms in the ocean to drill for oil. Around 150 years ago, OIL WAS THOUGHT TO EXIST ONLY ON THE EASTERN COAST OF THE U. S. Then someone found oil in Texas and the east coast DRIED UP.

    Therefore, the next 50 years are going to be historic. If it is a bad history or a good history depends on whether we can kill these fanatical terrorists who believe that Allah will reward them if they hurt INNOCENT CIVILIANS and these suicidial despots like Saddam Hussein, Kim Jong Il, etc.
     
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2004
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook

Have something to add?



Similar Discussions: Next 50 years is bleak.
Loading...