“Are Human Genetic Traits a Threat to Survival?” –Nobel Laurate Asks


Nobel Laureate in medicine and author of Vital Dust: The Origin And Evolution Of Life On Earth, Christian de Duve, warns that our evolved traits and natural selection will lead to human exinction unless we overcome them. In addition to de Duve's warnings below, scientists around the world propose that humankind has so altered the Earth that that we have brought about an end to one epoch and entered a new age. They suggest humans have so changed the Earth that it’s time the Holocene epoch was officially ended. The new epoch of Earth’s history is being called the Anthropocene, meaning “man-made."

"The cost of our success is the exhaustion of natural resources, leading to energy crises, climate change, pollution and the destruction of our habitat," DeDuve added.  "If you exhaust natural resources there will be nothing left for your children. If we continue in the same direction, humankind is headed for some frightful ordeals, if not extinction.

"Natural selection has resulted in traits such as group selfishness being coded in our genes. These were useful to our ancestors under the conditions in which they lived, but have become noxious to us today. What would help us preserve our natural resources are genetic traits that let us sacrifice the present for the sake of the future. You need wisdom to sacrifice something that is immediately useful or advantageous for the sake of something that will be important in the future. Natural selection doesn't do that; it looks only at what is happening today. It doesn't care about your grandchildren or grandchildren's grandchildren," he concluded.

The Daily Galaxy via newscientist.com


"The Galaxy" in Your Inbox, Free, Daily