all 13 comments

[–]Bigs 4 insightful - 3 fun4 insightful - 2 fun5 insightful - 3 fun -  (2 children)

If we did as you suggest the vast majority of the human population would be dead within 1 year, most of them within the first 4 months.

Ironically enough, the only remaining humanity would be in Africa, in the few communities still surviving without any modern technology - because all modern tech relies on fossil fuels. From plastics, to medicines, to fertilizer and the means of transporting it all, it's reliant on fossil fuels. The Africans would die a bit later, when the nuclear reactors around the world melt down due to the lack of workers and electricity.

By the way, the Russians proved 10 years ago that it's not dinosaurs but a natural process from deep within the Earth. You can find oil virtually anywhere if you drill deep enough (like miles deep).

[–]Alienhunter 2 insightful - 2 fun2 insightful - 1 fun3 insightful - 2 fun -  (1 child)

Imagining a world where Thanos snaps all fossil fuels out of existence?

Nah modern civilization would absolutely collapse and world wide population would plummet. But the die off would be largely concentrated in cities which just wouldn't support their populations. People would have to move to places that are arable and start growing their own food, and the ones that couldn't would starve to death. Earth would go back to a largely pre-industrial agrarian economy by necessity but modern technology and some trappings of our current government systems would still exist, they would essentially be "wizard kings" lording over vast estates of agrarian peasants with the secrets of technology.

The nuclear reactors, if they melted down, wouldn't be a big problem since most are designed with fail-safes for those kinds of situation. And if the fail safes fail? Oh well, I guess cancer rates go up. Won't matter much since civilization as you know it as well as modern medicine will be largely concentrated in the hands of a small elite. Peasants wouldn't be living long enough to get cancer.

Seriously nuclear accidents don't work like the Simpsons. Go to Chernobyl and what do you see? Few people, loads of wildlife, gets by fine. Go to Fukushima and what do you see? Same thing.

The Africans will be fine unless they decide to go live within sight of a power plant.

[–]Bigs 1 insightful - 1 fun1 insightful - 0 fun2 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

Modern plants are much safer but there are plenty of older designs that would indeed melt down without electricity and workers. You mention the 2 examples of breakdowns that had people and power thrown at them - and still couldn't contain all the radiation.

Fukishima is still ongoing by the way. Nobody wants to talk about it because it's depressing and nobody can 'do something!' about it other than what is already being done.

In contrast, plants going full melt-down WITHOUT concrete envelopment and/or thousands of tons of water are something we've never experienced but is considered A Very Bad Thing. One of them might not end human life but a few dotted around the world all going at once..? I agree though, that for most people cancer wouldn't be a concern; starvation would.

"People would have to move to places that are arable" - By walking, and carrying any supplies with them, meaning most would not make it.

Even where things are ideal, good weather, good soil, tools already available - we'd be pretty fucked. Too many people fighting for scraps NOW, eating the seeds and the last of lifestock, so no new eggs or calves or much of anything the next season.

To really understand how fucked we'd be, you need to read the essay "I, Pencil". He explains how nobody knows how to make our most basic of machines, a pencil. Once we ran out of pencils we literally wouldn't be able to replace them. We'd be back to charcoal sticks or drawing in the mud.

See, modern humanity is entirely dependent upon the division of labor, meaning individual specialists and workers who do their own thing, which contributes to the amazing economy we have. Too much disruption (and just the energy crisis hitting Europe could trigger much of this) creates cascading knock-on effects that would wipe out a lot of production downstream. Even with all we have today, some of Germany's industrial base will never recover if the power goes out for just a few weeks. You can't just switch an economy off and switch it back on later.

More than 90% of humanity would be dead within weeks or a few months. Those left would be surrounded by technology they couldn't use. In hot or cold areas they'd mostly die off from the first hot summer or cold winter, leaving only those scraping by and able to live off the land under their feet. Like I said, Africa basically, until the radiation reaches them.

[–][deleted] 3 insightful - 4 fun3 insightful - 3 fun4 insightful - 4 fun -  (0 children)

I realize the earth would begin healing and climate change would reverse leading to the arctic freezing again and bumblebees resurging in population.

nice try Al Gore

[–]TarBaby 3 insightful - 2 fun3 insightful - 1 fun4 insightful - 2 fun -  (0 children)

Being that you need fossil fuels for manure and growing plants, people will starve. There would be no global trade as electric airplanes can only fly so far and coal plants generating electricity would be shut down leaving most of the world in darkness.

[–]TemporarilyDeceased 3 insightful - 2 fun3 insightful - 1 fun4 insightful - 2 fun -  (2 children)

Biggest impacts:

  • Food could no longer be planted, harvested, watered, and transported from farms as all of this required oil for tractors, fertilizer, and tractor trailer transport

  • The above would leave people without food to eat, but considering that billions of people rely upon gasoline in cars to get to work, they will no longer have money to purchase the non-existing food.

  • Billions of people would freeze during their first winter because they heat their homes with oil, natural gas, or propane and the demand for electric heating would outstrip supply by 100x.

  • The huge increase in demand for electricity for heat, cooking, transportation, etc will overload the electric grid bringing brown and blackouts.

  • Medical supplies would disappear as most of them are dependent on disposable plastic. Medical professionals would be forced to reuse plastic without training to equipment on how to properly sterilize them which would kill tens of thousands of people.

[–]Adventurous_Ad6212[S] 1 insightful - 1 fun1 insightful - 0 fun2 insightful - 1 fun -  (1 child)

Yes, but if we don't immediately end the use of all fossil fuels everyone on the planet will die in the future.

[–]mousetrap 1 insightful - 1 fun1 insightful - 0 fun2 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

Just stop oil needs violence

Everyone is just stop oil.

[–]Adventurous_Ad6212[S] 3 insightful - 1 fun3 insightful - 0 fun4 insightful - 1 fun -  (2 children)

I just wanna say thank science for my revelation about climate change and the need to end all fossile fules immediately. After all if we dont end the use of burning dinosaur fossiles we will all die of starvation, drowning and burning to death at the same time.

[–]Alienhunter 3 insightful - 2 fun3 insightful - 1 fun4 insightful - 2 fun -  (0 children)

Praise science and it's avatar Fauci, peace be upon him. Only through blind faith in factual science can we hope to break the surly bonds of nature and make her work for us. By our powers combined, politics, money, nepotism, Judaism, and heart, we summon the Earth's greatest champion, Capitan Science!

[–]IkeConn 2 insightful - 2 fun2 insightful - 1 fun3 insightful - 2 fun -  (0 children)

You and just about everybody you know will die. It will come down to us or the planet. Long term the planet will win.

[–]ljglmail 1 insightful - 2 fun1 insightful - 1 fun2 insightful - 2 fun -  (0 children)

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