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Threats Humanity Faces [Infographic]

Creating Dystopia: The Greatest Threats Humanity Faces

New and Evolved Deadly Diseases
Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria
Antibiotic-resistant bacteria cannot be controlled or killed off by certain antibiotics as a result of bacterial evolution
Every year in the U.S.:
2 million people are infected by these resistant strains
23,000 die because of these infections
Antibiotics are part of the problem
Drives evolution of bacteria through gene transfer, spontaneous mutation, and natural selection
Estimated 30-60% of antibiotics prescribed in ICUs are “unnecessary, inappropriate, or suboptimal”
At least 30% of U.S. antibiotic prescriptions are unnecessary
An infection of concern:
Multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB)
Resists the two strongest anti-TB drugs, isoniazid and rifampicin
In 2016 worldwide…
490,000 MDR-TB cases
1.7 million general TB-related deaths
10.4 million people infected with TB disease
Pandemic Influenza
Flu strains new to humans have deadly and pandemic potential
Seasonal influenza
Humans can build up immunity from past exposure and vaccination
Certain populations are high risk
E.g. Infants, elderly, pregnant women
Causes 3 to 5 million cases of extreme illness every year
Pandemic influenza
Little to no immunity from lack of exposure
Healthy populations can also be at high risk
Potential for extreme rates of hospitalization and death
1918 Spanish Flu
At least 50 million killed worldwide
Current viruses of concern:
H5N1- Asian Avian Influenza A
Most human cases related to contact with infected poultry
Over 700 human infections since 2003
Respiratory infection that can lead to severe disease and death
60% mortality rate
If the individual and aggregate health of humanity is a concern for the future, so too is the health of the planet we rely on to sustain us

The Extreme Cost of Extreme Conditions

Global infectious disease rates may be exacerbated by climate change
Rapid shifts in demographic, environmental, and social structures increase occurrence of diseases such as:
Climate Change
C02 levels are the higher than ever
Global atmospheric carbon dioxide levels (in parts per million)
1958: 315 ppm
2017: 410 ppm
In 2015, C02 accounted for 82% of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions, gases that trap heat in the atmosphere
It’s heating up here on Earth
17 of the 18 warmest years across 136 years occurred since 2001
Arctic sea ice is declining at a rate of 13.2% per decade
The oceans are rising
Global sea levels rose 1.7-3.1 millimeters per year in the past century compared to 0-0.3 millimeters over the past 2000 years
Could lose 8 feet of shoreline for every inch of sea level rise
Almost the length of a Boeing 737-500 over a century

Global Consequences

Climate Refugees
Those forced to leave areas because of impacts from climate change
Sea level rise threatens coastal populations
There may be 1.4 billion people in low elevation coastal zones (LECZ) by 2060
12% of the projected population
Resource scarcity
805 million people are currently undernourished, 11% of the global population
175 million more may face undernourishment by 2080 due to high greenhouse gas levels and population growth
Draught recovery times are getting longer globally
4 billion people already face severe water scarcity at least one month a year
It is one thing to worry about threats that humanity has to face outside of our control, but what about the threats that are, ironically, created to help us?

An Automatic Dystopia of our own Design

Automated Technology
Technology that monitors and controls the production and delivery of goods and services
Accomplished through advanced robotics and artificial intelligence (A.I.)
Machines with A.I. can accomplish tasks through machine learning, adaptability, and the mass processing of new and existing information
Human replacement
By 2030, 75-375 million jobs, or 3-14% of the global workforce, could be automated
Massive economic inequality possible as production resources consolidate
Military Autonomous Applications
Intelligent and autonomous weapons technology is taking root
30+ nations have or are developing armed drones
90+ nations have unarmed drone capabilities
Drone swarms
U.S. Navy LOCUST (Low-Cost UAV Swarming Technology)
Fires 30 autonomous swarming UAVs to jam radar and draw fire
Terrifying Concept Tech
EATR (Energetically Autonomous Tactical Robot)
Research project started in 2003 and funded by DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency)
Autonomous and intelligent mobile platform with a hybrid combustion engine that converts biomass to fuel
E.g. plants, animals, HUMANS
100+ founders and CEOs of artificial intelligence and robotics companies have signed an open letter of concern over autonomous warfare technology to the United Nations

Whether our undoing will be wrought by disease, nature, technology, or none of the above, it’s worth discussing and understanding the biggest threats to public health we may be facing
Threats Humanity Faces