March 17, 2014 - In today's UK Huffington Post the following headline appears - Civilisation Is Doomed Warns Safa Motesharri's Nasa-Funded Study. The author is mathematician, Safa Motesharri, who applies what is described as a "highly simplified model" to predict the future path of modern industrial society. This model, called the Human and Nature DYnamical (HANDY) purportedly looks at population, climate change, freshwater, agriculture, energy and other factors to predict the outcome of our civilization.
We are doomed just like the Roman Empire, the Han of China, the Harappa of the Indus River, the Anasazi of the American southwest, the Mauryan and Gupta Empires and so many more. The conclusions are drawn from current over consumption, limited carrying capacity of the planet, increased socioeconomic stratification and many other factors.
What's very interesting is I have yet to actually find the original paper supposedly published in the journal, Ecological Economics. Yet I have found lots of media outlets like the Huffington Post, and numerous bloggers writing about it.
I haven't found any NASA reference to the HANDY model upon which the study is based. Nor have I found any reference to the author either at the Goddard Space Flight Center, supposedly a sponsor, or at the National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center associated with the author.
I am certain that there are many mathematical models in existence that produce a Malthusian forecast for our civilization. But what disturbs me about this most recent headline is how quickly information has received widespread coverage. Check the links on all the sites that have reported the story and not one goes to the source document from which the information is supposedly derived.
Now there is enough valid science out there pointing to the human requirement to address climate change without invention. So all I ask is if I'm wrong then set me straight. I've written the National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center to confirm if Mr. Motesharri actually exists. A Google search to find him comes up empty. I have also written to Elsevier, publishers of Ecological Economics to see if indeed they have published a paper authored by Mr. Motesharri whose name doesn't come up when you search their site. I'll let you know what I discover but in the meantime if any of you are sleuths and want to do your own digging, please let me know the results.
Related articles across the web
- NASA: Industrial Civilization Heading for Irreversible Collapse
- NASA-Funded Study: Industrial Civilisation Headed For 'Irreversible Collapse'?
- Modern civilisation is heading for collapse within a matter of decades because of growing economic instability and pressure on the planet's resources, according to a scientific study funded by Nasa.
- NASA-Funded Study Sounds Alarm for Civilization
Essays and comments posted in World Future Society and THE FUTURIST magazine blog portion of this site are the intellectual property of the authors, who retain full responsibility for and rights to their content. For permission to publish, distribute copies, use excerpts, etc., please contact the author. The opinions expressed are those of the author. The World Future Society takes no stand on what the future will or should be like.
Free Email Newsletter
To sign up for Futurist Update, our free monthly email newsletter, enter your email in the box below and click Save.
December 22, 2014 - Alzheimer's patients progressively lose their memories. I watched my mother-in-law and mother both succumb to the ravages of this disease as it robbed them of the recent past and then peeled away the decades until they reverted to distant memories. In my mother, a trilingual and adept, discerning individual, it even robbed her of her ability to speak coherently.
December 21, 2014 - India has long had a missile program but its development of heavy launch capacity has been impaired by delays in technology advances and failed tests. But in this last week the country witnessed the first big leap forward into a space program that will include humans in orbit.
A number of striking developments suggest a series of breakthroughs on climate change, alternative energy, and other critical environmental issues.
GLOBAL AGREEMENT AMONG 196 NATIONS
December 19, 2014 - In my last posting I presented ten disturbing statistics about our 21st century world. There are, however, signs that we humans haven't yet succumbed to a hopeless future. So let's look at ten technological innovations and the positive disruption they bring to this century, leading to a much better outcome by the year 2100.
December 18, 2014 - With 2015 a mere two weeks away I thought a year-in-review look at where we are trending would give humanity a sense of urgency about tackling the many challenges we are imposing on our species and the other inhabitants of this planet.
December 17, 2014 - Move over Earth. You are probably no longer the sole source of life in the Universe, or even in the Solar System.
December 16, 2014 - Desalination of Pacific Ocean water may prove to be a cheaper solution for California then massive relocation of its cities as