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13 Worst Predictions From Earth Day Era, April 1970

From CNS News:

13 Worst Predictions Made on Earth Day, 1970

By Jon Gabriel | April 23, 2014

… Behold the coming apocalypse as predicted on and around Earth Day, 1970:

1. "Civilization will end within 15 or 30 years unless immediate action is taken against problems facing mankind." – Harvard biologist George Wald

2. "We are in an environmental crisis which threatens the survival of this nation, and of the world as a suitable place of human habitation." – Washington University biologist Barry Commoner

3. "Man must stop pollution and conserve his resources, not merely to enhance existence but to save the race from intolerable deterioration and possible extinction." – New York Times editorial

4. "Population will inevitably and completely outstrip whatever small increases in food supplies we make. The death rate will increase until at least 100-200 million people per year will be starving to death during the next ten years." – Stanford University biologist Paul Ehrlich

5. "Most of the people who are going to die in the greatest cataclysm in the history of man have already been born… [By 1975] some experts feel that food shortages will have escalated the present level of world hunger and starvation into famines of unbelievable proportions. Other experts, more optimistic, think the ultimate food-population collision will not occur until the decade of the 1980s." – Paul Ehrlich

6. "It is already too late to avoid mass starvation," – Denis Hayes, Chief organizer for Earth Day

7. "Demographers agree almost unanimously on the following grim timetable: by 1975 widespread famines will begin in India; these will spread by 1990 to include all of India, Pakistan, China and the Near East, Africa. By the year 2000, or conceivably sooner, South and Central America will exist under famine conditions…. By the year 2000, thirty years from now, the entire world, with the exception of Western Europe, North America, and Australia, will be in famine." – North Texas State University professor Peter Gunter

8. "In a decade, urban dwellers will have to wear gas masks to survive air pollution… by 1985 air pollution will have reduced the amount of sunlight reaching earth by one half." – Life Magazine

9. "At the present rate of nitrogen buildup, it’s only a matter of time before light will be filtered out of the atmosphere and none of our land will be usable." – Ecologist Kenneth Watt

10. "Air pollution…is certainly going to take hundreds of thousands of lives in the next few years alone." – Paul Ehrlich

11. "By the year 2000, if present trends continue, we will be using up crude oil at such a rate… that there won’t be any more crude oil. You’ll drive up to the pump and say, ‘Fill ‘er up, buddy,’ and he’ll say, ‘I am very sorry, there isn’t any.’" – Ecologist Kenneth Watt

12. "[One] theory assumes that the earth’s cloud cover will continue to thicken as more dust, fumes, and water vapor are belched into the atmosphere by industrial smokestacks and jet planes. Screened from the sun’s heat, the planet will cool, the water vapor will fall and freeze, and a new Ice Age will be born." – Newsweek magazine

13. "The world has been chilling sharply for about twenty years. If present trends continue, the world will be about four degrees colder for the global mean temperature in 1990, but eleven degrees colder in the year 2000. This is about twice what it would take to put us into an ice age." – Kenneth Watt

Oh, well. It’s not like we are supposed to take these doomsday predictions of environmental disaster seriously. Or change our lives because of them.

This article was posted by Steve Gilbert on Thursday, April 24th, 2014. Comments are currently closed.

One Response to “13 Worst Predictions From Earth Day Era, April 1970”

  1. Rusty Shackleford

    It’s never been any secret to me that “great scientific minds” are also susceptible to mythology and superstition. There is evidence to support that Isaac Newton was engaged in alchemy.

    At the very base of it all, one must understand that they are people. And people tend to let their emotions run their lives. Now, before one gets the idea that this is all bad, it is these emotions that make us all human and fallible, and in God’s grand design, it’s intentional.

    However, what people do with those emotions and how they respond to the “evidence” before them is key. The collection of sky-is-falling attitudes and submissions above seems to indicate that they are no better at identifying crap when they see it than the average man of 200 or 2,000 years ago. Thus, we will always have flim-flam men and snake-oil salesmen.

    Problem is that nowadays, the information stream is so broad and fast that truly, “a lie can be seven or eight times around the world before the truth can get its shoes on” to paraphrase the statement. And, people, being the emotional critters that they are and whose lives are largely run by FEAR, react predictably. Their (that is the average so-and-so’s) perspective is very narrow, very short-sighted and very self-centered. Even when they are thinking that they are “helping the planet”, in reality they are simply assuaging their own fears and working to gain acceptance in their social group.

    Acceptance is key in the human genome. People who are self-starters, like they advertise in the job-market really aren’t what’s desired. What people want are those who act and think like they do so they don’t have to compete or compare.

    The major difference in today’s society though, seems to be that people shun competition. They fear it, they run from it and flame it as evil. Yet historically, it’s been competition amongst humans that has resulted in both the best and worst we have ever seen.

    In the end, humans seem to be the ONLY creature on the face of the earth that are able to outright defy their own instincts. This is both good and bad but so far, by virtue of our current re-definition of “normal”, it has sucked loudly.




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