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What climate change causes literally put the collapse of civilizations on a door /a study from 1972 predicted what is happening today!

What climate change causes literally put the collapse of civilizations on a door /a study from 1972 predicted what is happening today!

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In his book, The Long Descent, Michael Greer says:

“The gradual disintegration is the way civilizations end, not the sudden catastrophic collapse, and this pattern is always repeated in history.”

Michael Greer

Michael Greer estimates that this gradual collapse of civilizations takes on average about 250 years, and relies on history to support his opinion.

When we look back a little, we notice the collapse of different civilizations – no matter how great – gradually until civilization collapses completely. Egyptian, Babylonian, Roman, Persian, and others.

History has made us fully confident in a well-known Arabic proverb, “The situation remains impossible.” This is expected of advanced civilizations in our time as well, as there is no evidence to prevent them from gradually collapsing as happened in the past.

In other words, history is repeating itself. “It’s the usual timetable,” according to Greer’s description of potential collapses. But.

what climate change causes literally put the collapse of civilizations on a door /a study from 1972 predicted what is happening today!


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Regardless of power struggles or people’s anger at rulers and so on, there are hidden reasons behind the curtain that cause civilizations to collapse.

Jan Morris, a historian, archaeologist, and professor at Stanford University, summarized them at the 2016 World Economic Forum as follows:

  • Weather changes. (This is the focus of our topic)
  • Constant movement of people.
  • Spread of epidemics and diseases.
  • Weak state administration and increased wars.
  • The collapse of trade routes, causing famine.

Well, let’s find out more about the influence of these factors.

By looking at the samples and relics that scientists extract from different places and examining them well, they can determine the climatic changes that occurred at the time and how people lived

And they even found that the climatic changes that occurred before the collapse of the ancient Roman civilization were a major factor in its decline.

By examining the samples also, they concluded that the Akkadian civilization (in Iraq) had basically collapsed due to climatic changes.

In addition to climatic changes, there are epidemics and diseases, these microorganisms are capable of destroying civilizations and killing fleets, as happened in the naval battle of Actium, where the Egyptian fleet collapsed mainly due to the spread of an epidemic among the soldiers and a large number of them died.

These epidemics move us to the third factor, which is the movement of people and their migration from one land to another, which is what the Italian novels that appeared during the fourteenth century AD, when the ship of death carrying the plague epidemic arrived on the shores of Sicily (currently an island in Italy), people came out of their homes and migrated to places far from the epidemic to ensure life.

This behavior occurred in ancient civilizations as well.

Yan sees uncontrollable population movement driven by the flight from new epidemics as an important factor in the collapse of civilizations, especially if they are new.

It often arises when a group of separate epidemics comes together and a new epidemic forms.

These population movements lead to the transmission of epidemics to the new places to which they move, that is, epidemics may come from distant countries and spread among the people of civilization and become infected and civilization is affected and collapses if the epidemic is fatal or the people of civilization flee to a safe place and the country is empty of people, and thus the collapse of civilization as well But because of the absence of the residents who reside.

When the population decreases and large numbers of them emigrate, the state weakens and its foundations collapse, and wars and conflicts may occur, whether internal or external, which ultimately affects the movement of trade, resulting in famines.

This is what happened in Egypt during the eleventh century during the Fatimid Caliphate, and this famine was called the Al-Mustansiriya hardship.

It was lost during the era of the Fatimid Caliph “Al-Mustansir Billah”, when the waters of the Nile decreased, and were no longer sufficient for life, so agricultural lands dried up and poverty spread among the people to the extent that The Caliph himself did not find food.

So a large number of the people of Egypt fled from hunger, and the numbers of Egyptian people decreased in an unprecedented way, the state weakened and its economy collapsed.

Scientists have concluded that these five factors strongly influence the collapse of civilizations. However, every rule has an exception. Leaders may be able to avoid such collapses by focusing on the economic strength of the country.

If it grows strong, the potential collapses can be faced. But Dr. Yan concludes his lecture that we are now under greater pressure than ever before. The challenges are stronger. Especially with the climatic changes that occur in our time.


You can watch the lecture here:

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The term climate refers to the weather conditions of a place during a specific time period, while climate change, refers to changes in the average weather conditions over several decades, i.e. a noticeable difference in the general climate of the region.

Usually, satellites and weather stations are used to calculate the climate.

The causes of climate change are varied.

While humans are always blamed, the truth is that there are many other natural factors, including those that caused the extinction of dinosaurs, as scientific evidence indicates that dinosaurs lived in a completely different climate from the one we live in today, and the proportions of gases in the atmosphere at that time were on The Earth is different from the current one we humans endure, which has made climate change a major cause of the extinction of these giant reptiles.

From all of that, we conclude that man does not have the upper hand in the occurrence of climate changes, as many people think.

Let us put forward the different causes of climate change:

  • Natural causes:
    • Volcanic eruptions.
    • Changes in the concentration of greenhouse gases.
  • Human causes:
    • greenhouse gas emissions.
    • fossil fuel combustion.
    • Deforestation that increases carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere.

(Information on the margins, it is estimated that 20% of the carbon dioxide emitted into the atmosphere is caused by deforestation and fuel combustion).

What does climate change mean?

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The weather is getting rough

The rise in temperatures leads to the accumulation of water, so that wet areas become wetter, and dry areas become drier, and not only that but may develop into natural disasters such as floods, storms, heatwaves, and droughts, which exposes clean water to pollution and stimulates forest fires that we hear It extends the danger to buildings, property, and loss of life.

Air pollution

Air pollution is linked to climate change. When the Earth’s temperature rises, pollutants increase in the air and cause diseases such as allergies caused by mold spread during wet weather, as well as pollen.

Disease spread

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the number of deaths is expected to increase to 250,000 between 2030-2050 due to climatic changes, as heat stress will exacerbate cardiovascular and kidney diseases, in addition to exposure to heatstroke. About 300 million people are suffering from asthma around the world. As well as epidemics that are transmitted due to climatic changes (we will talk about them shortly).

Rising water levels at the poles

The rising temperature causes the ice to melt at the poles. At the poles, this melting occurs twice as fast as anywhere else. This causes the water level to rise. The ocean level is expected to rise at a rate of 1-4 feet (30.48-121.92 cm) by 2100 (and this is a very important piece of information). Thus, the largest cities in the world, such as New York, Mumbai, Miami, and Sydney, as well as island nations are at risk of drowning.

Ocean systems collapse

It is estimated that the oceans are now 30% more acidic than pre-industrial times, because they absorb a large amount of fossil fuel emissions, and this amount constitutes between a quarter and a third of all emissions, which poses a threat to underwater creatures, especially Oysters, shells and corals. In addition, it affects animals that eat shellfish.

On the other hand, the oceans are warming, which negatively affects underwater species, especially coral reefs. Note that these reefs support 25% of marine life.

Species extinction

In 2015, a study published in the journal Science estimated that many species such as fish, birds, mammals, and reptiles are going extinct 114 times faster than usual. The researchers pointed out that this is happening due to climate change, pollution, deforestation, etc.

Climate change before the dawn of history

The fossil record tells us that there were giant reptiles that lived on the planet and became extinct about 65 million years ago. The reasons for its extinction were many, as some scientific opinions go to the fall of a meteorite that killed her.

Many evidence confirms that they were subjected to climatic changes that did not suit their bodies, so they fell one after the other until they became extinct.

Here is evidence that climatic changes have caused the collapse of large groups of animals in what is called a mass extinction.

This case occurred several times, the last of which was the fifth and most famous mass extinction in which the dinosaurs slept peacefully and left their remains to us to tell us their story or to give us a sign that there was a powerful factor capable of changing the course of history, which is the climate.

Yes, the climate controlled the lives of the Roman emperors

The Roman civilization was famous for its strength and its emperors were known for their toughness and brutality at times, but what many people did not know was that raindrops had a hidden role in the assassination of these emperors.

This is explained by a study published in 2018 in “Economics Letters”, conducted by Dr. “Cornelius Christian”, where the study linked the period in which the amount of rain decreased with the rebellion of Roman soldiers, as they depended on this rain to grow the crops on which they depended for food.

And when it declines, they do not plant, and famine spreads, which motivates them to rebel against the rulers, and it may even lead to assassination.

The history of Rome bears witness to the killing of 20% of the emperors in more than 500 years.

Researchers were able to link raindrops and assassination by using ancient climate data, as they examined rings of petrified trees on the borders of the ancient Roman kingdom in France and Germany, where soldiers were stationed to protect the country from danger or war.

By analyzing these rings, they were able to calculate the amount of rain in millimeters during each spring for the past 2,500 years.

And reviewing the historical data that recorded the mutiny of soldiers.

It turns out that the lower the amount of rain, the greater the chance of assassinating the ruler. Just as it happened with the emperor “Vitellius”, who was assassinated in 69 BC. This year, the rainfall was particularly low.

Climate change and epidemics

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The Earth has been suffering from a rise in temperature for decades, which made the world stand up and environmental issues spread very quickly among humans in an attempt to make an apology to the Earth, and several international days were adopted for the protection of the environment and species, such as World Earth Day.

The idea of ​​the spread of diseases with climate changes became famous, and here is an important question, which is what is the relationship of epidemics to climate?

Quite simply, as temperatures rise – as is happening today – animals large and small are fleeing towards the polar region to avoid the heat.

This causes different types of animals to mingle with each other, allowing pathogens to pass to new hosts.

Not only heat, but sometimes, humans interfere with nature, clearing forests, which causes many animals to lose their habitats (by the way, this happens around the world), so animals are forced to migrate to other places, carrying epidemics with them and may transmit them when they mix with animals Others include cattle and sheep that a person feeds on, and the infection is transmitted to him if he eats their diseased meat.

Many epidemics and diseases have already been spread by climate change, just as Lyme disease and malaria, and dengue are transmitted by mosquitoes. These diseases are transmitted mainly from other organisms.

what climate change causes literally put the collapse of civilizations on a door /a study from 1972 predicted what is happening today!

What is the story of the study published in 1972?

In the summer of 1970, a team of researchers decided to study the impact of population growth on the world, and the study was conducted at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and focused on the basic factors, namely:

  • Population growth rates.
  • Pollution generation sources.
  • Agricultural Production.
  • The rate of depletion of non-renewable natural resources.
  • Industrial production.

Researchers used these factors to make assumptions about the future of humans and concluded that the Earth’s resources may not be enough for the population in light of this increasing population density and will end by the year 2100.

These results were published in 1972 in a book called “The Limits to Growth.” Many people speculated about this book, and it was widely ridiculed.

But in 2008, the Australian Research Service (CSIRO) indicated that the expected economic and environmental collapse was on the right track set by the previous study that predicted it.

In their results, they relied on observing the basic factors used before, namely climatic changes, approaching oil depletion, and food and water problems.

However, a 2009 study, conducted by a group of American scientists, was published and indicated that there are many reviews and studies by economic researchers, though we are not sure which of these studies have more accurate numbers.

But the current technological development may help change the course of this prediction, which predicted the collapse of the economy in 1972.

what climate change causes literally put the collapse of civilizations on a door /a study from 1972 predicted what is happening today!

How will climate change affect the economy?

According to the World Economic Forum, climate change may affect the global economy by 2050 as follows:

  • If the Paris Agreement is implemented, the global economy will be affected by only 4%, because the amount of temperature increase will be less than 2 degrees Celsius.
  • The global economy would see an 11% decline if most mitigation measures were taken, temperatures above 2°C.
  • If some mitigating measures are taken, the global economy would drop by 14%, at which point the temperature increase would be estimated at 2.6 degrees Celsius.
  • Climate change may reduce the gross domestic product of the global economy by 18%, in the event that the necessary measures are not taken and the temperature rises by 3.2 degrees Celsius.

Finally, climate change may really have played a role at the end of human civilization, but no one knows. But what is certain now is that the Earth needs help for the next generation, who may suffer from the problems caused by the human being of the twenty-first century. As for the book published in 1972, there is no need to worry, in the same book the authors put a message of hope that states that man can build a society in which he can live forever if he can achieve balance and impose restrictions on himself that limit his activities harmful to the environment.

what climate change causes literally put the collapse of civilizations on a door /a study from 1972 predicted what is happening today!

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