Table 1

Table 1.  Realistic assessment of the various man-made (anthropogenic) threats facing the ongoing well-being of our current civilization over the coming century. 

Event

Likelihood of occurrence during the next century (scored from 0-1.0)

Significance for civilization should this occur (scored from 1-100)

Magnitude of threat (= significance x likelihood, maximum score = 100)

Adequacy of current or projected response (scored out of 100)

Response to threat ratioa (scores above 1.0 indicate that the response is adequate)

Descriptive assessment (numerical ratio translated to laypersons' language)

Climate change: global warming

1.00

100

100

5

0.05

Already dead

Climate change: global pollution via hydroxyl radical depletion

0.90

100

90

1

0.01

Already dead

Resource wars

0.95

95

90

3

0.03

Already dead

Fundamentalist jihad, Muslim

0.22

60

13

4

0.30

Already dead

Fundamentalist jihad, Christian

0.60

60

36

0

0.00

Already dead

Bioweapons error

0.25

85

21

10

0.47

Already dead

Honest mistake

1.00

100

100

0

0.00

Already dead

Influenza pandemic

0.50

75

38

25

0.67

Already dead

Economic meltdown

0.90

70

63

5

0.08

Already dead

Particle physics miscalculation

0.00001

100

0.001

0

0.00

Already dead

Nuclear war or error

0.25

80

20

3

0.15

Already dead

a. Response-to-threat ratios are provided to two decimal places to indicate the impressive precision of these estimates.

 

Table 2.  Realistic assessment of the validated (non-theoretical) natural disaster scenarios the would also put a downer on the well-being of our current civilization, were they to occur in the coming century.

Event

Likelihood of occurrence at some point in the future, possibly today (scored from 0-1.0)

Significance for civilization should this occur (scored from 1-100)

Magnitude of threat (= significance x likelihood, maximum score = 100)

Adequacy of current or projected response (scored out of 100)

Response to threat ratioa (scores above 1.0 indicate that the response is adequate)

Descriptive assessment (numerical ratio translated to laypersons' language)

Large asteroid impact

1.00

100

100

10

0.10

Already dead

Mega tsunami(s)

1.00

100

100

0

0.00

Already dead

Shift in Earth's magnetic field

1.00

60

60

0

0.00

Already dead

The ultimate volcano

1.00

95

95

0

0.00

Already dead

Burn out of the sun

1.00

100

100

0

0.00

Already dead

a. Response-to-threat ratios are provided to two decimal places to indicate the impressive precision of these estimates.