by DAN ROBITZSKI
If we don’t start to take urgent action to prevent the worst impacts of climate change today, then we may experience the end of our species within a century, former President Barack Obama said in a new interview.
Obama made the argument in a wide-ranging chat, on The New York Times‘ podcast The Ezra Klein Show, that also broached partisan politics, racial justice, the impacts of his presidency, and even UFOs. Specifically, Klein asked Obama what he thought we, as a society, would be judged the most harshly for in the year 2121, making the topic of climate inaction a pretty reasonable topic to bring up.
“Well, if we don’t get a handle on climate change, then if there’s anybody around to judge us, they’ll judge us pretty harshly on it, because the data is here,” Obama replied. “We know it. And we have the tools to make real progress with it.”
Obama was likely exaggerating for effect — even the most alarming predictions for the future of humanity suggest that climate-related extinction wouldn’t happen that close to the present, though some predict societal breakdown even sooner.
READ MORE: Obama Explains How America Went From ‘Yes We Can’ to ‘MAGA’ [The New York Times]
More on human extinction: MIT Professor: I Fear Imminent Human Extinction