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Earth Will Die Of Disaster In The Next Millennium, Says Hawking

Update Date: Jan 20, 2016 08:56 AM EST

Disaster will wipe out the earth in the next thousand to ten thousand years, says renowned cosmologist Stephen Hawking, as he turns 74 this month. The threat of the nuclear war and global warming are stalking the human race, he adds.

"We face a number of threats: nuclear war, global warming and genetically engineered viruses," Hawking told the Radio Times. "Although the chance of a disaster on planet Earth in a given year may be quite low, it adds up over time, becoming a near certainty in the next thousand or ten thousand years. By that time we should have spread out into space, and to other stars, so it would not mean the end of the human race."

Rapid development in science and technology are posing a threat to the earth. Perhaps the human species can survive if we colonize other planets, he feels.

"Most of the threats we face come from the progress we've made in science and technology," said Hawking. "We are not going to stop making progress, or reverse it, so we must recognize the dangers and control them. I'm an optimist, and I believe we can."

His hope for life dwindled after learning that he was suffering from a motor neuron disease at the age of 21 years, according to The Guardian.

It is now 50 years since his diagnosis, but he avers that his condition was not a "handicap in the areas of life that he valued most", such as theoretical physics.

What helps to keep us positive is humour, he feels. "It's also important not to become angry, no matter how difficult life is, because you can lose all hope if you can't laugh at yourself and at life in general," he said.

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