The Instigator
Donjaundebater1212
Pro (for)
Winning
2 Points
The Contender
wiggityp
Con (against)
Losing
1 Points

Man kind will ravage the earth before it can colonize or begin to colonize a new planet.

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 1 vote the winner is...
Donjaundebater1212
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/28/2013 Category: Miscellaneous
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 765 times Debate No: 35149
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (7)
Votes (1)

 

Donjaundebater1212

Pro

Hello, this the first debate I've put out and I'm hoping this doesn't bite me back :P.

The topic of discussion is as follows: Man kind is getting closer and closer to a break down point in civilization. no energy, not alternative, no space, etc. I as the Pro am defending the fact that Civilization cannot sustain itself for another 50 years.

The burden of the Con is to rebut this statement and explain why.

Rules:
round 1. acceptance.
round 2. Opening arguments.
round 3. answering round 2's arguments
round 4. rebuttal's and conclusions.
No trolling,
if you are quoting a source please post the link, as will I.
and please distinguish your main points as will I for the purpose of a clean smooth debate.
Thank you. I look forward to this argument.
wiggityp

Con

I accept.

Thank you.
Debate Round No. 1
Donjaundebater1212

Pro

Thank you.
My opening statement is as follows:
The world as we know it today has many challenge facing it in the future. Currently, the world struggles to solve international disputes, resource consumption, world hunger, etc. The future holds nothing better. Although man kind has made astronomical achievements in medicine, science, industrialization, politics and things of the sort, there are simple textbook problems which simply cannot be solved, only mitigated.

A. Resource consumption. *sources [2] [3] [4] [5] [7] [8]*
- In 1970's we saw a peak in oil production, and as the years have rolled on oil production has only peaked slightly since then, it has begun to decrease. This is a very textbook problem that has no solution. Now although there are clean alternatives and countries such as Spain have been able create half the energy they normally use on a regular day with clean alternatives, this system cannot be expected to work everywhere else. For example, solar is not a viable option due to the resources needed to built the giant panels if America for example were to do this in mass. Wind mills generate thousands of watts, however have tendencies to burn out, and obviously the wind doesn't blow every day.
Clean energy cannot be used in mass due to its EROEI (basically energy returned for energy input). Shale has become the new horizon for many countries. Shale is very low in energy and needs lots of powered machinery in order to convert it into oil. All the worlds resources are expected to hypothetically last easily 100 years. This however is not true (I will explain why below). It is only a matter of time before all the finite resources on this planet are depleted, regardless of technological advances.

B. Population growth in relation to resources. *Sources [1][5][6] *
When the industrial revolution began, the world saw an immediate increase in its population. As a result the world boomed with advances, buildings, agriculture, technology, communication etc. Now, in 2014, after the world has seen two wars, and the destruction of so many economies and cities, somehow, the population still continues to soar.
Currently there are 7,094,823,500 people in the world. The population is expected to grow to somewhere near 10 billion. In a world where oil is still declining, coal is declining and polluting, the demand for such resources increase. When the population increases in such a way, however many years of resources there would have been otherwise relative to our current population, would decrease by about a third if not more. With this being said one wonders two things. A. How much longer will the earth provide our race with resources. And B. How much longer can the human race live "here"?

C. Colonization of other planets, not possible.
The human race has looked to the stars for new inhabitable worlds for our kind to one day walk upon. Unfortunately, that's not a plausible option. In order to "Planet hop", we must develop rockets to transport us, and equipment their. We need the resources to fuel the rockets their and back and we need the money to do so (I will go into deeper explanation of this upon my opponents following speech).

D. Political / economical problems.
To be frank, in order to meet the needs of a growing population, a declining resource reserve in all major countries, douse worsening relations and mitigate the effects of whatever natural disasters man kind has caused, the only choice is to develop a "Globalize" government.
There is a problem with this logic however.
A global government cannot function on its own economically as there are no other entities to buy or trade from. The result is a form of communism, where the population works and creates products for the common good of the world in this case. Communism has its many downfalls as we all know.

For the sake of debate though, let us picture a world where a globalize government occurs. When it sets forth to solve problems such as increasing population and energy consumption multiple things can happen:
-population control= massacres, starvation,death by poverty and disease resulting in a smaller population.
- control/resources = Sets forth to develop means to transport a growing population to another planet if one is found, and finds out that this is not possible for several reasons. Resources are then wrongly spent on certain projects, the population continues to rise with now even less resources and a government with no solutions to the problems facing them as a whole and only a few ways to mitigate the problems. As this continues, revolution stirs due to a high poverty rate and an elitist class which cannot solve these problems. This whole scenario resembles revolutionary France in the late 17th century. In the end, Marshall law is instated to protect the wealthy percent of the population, poverty remains constant, populations decrease as famine,disease and war continues, and leaves a population with little to no resources left and a collapsed civilization.

In conclusion, The world cannot sustain a modern civilization for the reasons the Pro has provided. It is the burden of the Con to rebut these arguments and prove why modern civilization can sustain itself in the coming decades.

sites: [1] http://www.census.gov...
[2] http://www.scientificamerican.com...
[3] http://people.hofstra.edu...
[4] http://wind-power-problems.org...
[5] http://topdocumentaryfilms.com...
[6] http://www.globalchange.umich.edu...
[7] http://www.npg.org...
[8] http://www.census.gov...
wiggityp

Con

Opening statement:
Obviously the world as we know it today faces many challenges including and certainly not limited to the ones listed by Pro. Pro said:
'The future holds nothing better.'
...is your real name Galadriel? Pro"s whole position rests on the hypothesis that something won't happen; however they do not (nor does anyone or anything else as far as I know) have the capability to tell of what has not yet come to pass. Regardless of how difficult or improbable many of the proposed solutions are (and there are many) to such macro problems, some are still theoretically possible therefore negating Pro"s concrete stance that the Earth's human population won't/can't find some way to make it work. I will elucidate this position in juxtaposition to Pro"s specific points.

A. Resource consumption.
To say that there is no solution to our energy consumption is astoundingly narrow sighted. Pro says that Spain uses clean renewable energy for half its daily consumption needs. But then says that the U.S. could not do so "in mass" due to the resources needed to build the giant panels. The U.S. has 10 times the nominal GDP of Spain [4] and obviously our natural resources (if nothing else the amount of land we control) is vastly greater than Spain, so why exactly couldn"t we do what they are doing? Pro also says windmills have a tendency to burn out. This is extremely vague. There are multitudes of different designs and companies producing windmills and it"s ridiculous to say that they are all going to be unreliable because they have a tendency to burn out. That is like saying we shouldn"t use any automobiles because some of them sometimes break down, even though they are outrageously convenient and productive. If they break down, we fix them. Also Pro doesn"t even mention hydroelectric power which has the potential to produce over 40 times more energy than it"s currently producing. [1] In addition, new progress in finding earth abundant photovoltaic materials [5] as well as the fact that the sun blasts Earth with twice as much energy annually as the entirety of the available non-renewable resources of Earth could produce "including fossil fuels and nuclear uranium" [2] means that renewable energy has not even remotely tapped its full potential. Pro states that the finite resources of this planet will be depleted regardless of advances in technology. This is ridiculous, as above mentioned it is completely possible that advances in technology are what will render our current finite materials (i.e. fossil fuels) obsolete and thus not worth depleting. And even if they are someday completely tapped, it is very likely that with technological advances that day could be postponed much farther down the road than 50 years.
Not to mention the potential energy derived from nuclear fusion which according to a recent Guardian article is happening now and is likely not far from being commercially viable. [6] The same article also states how utterly massive the amount of energy from fusion reactors could be, with very little proportional input as far as fuel.
-
[1] http://www.intpow.com...
[2] http://energyinformative.org...
[4] http://en.wikipedia.org...
[5]http://ieeexplore.ieee.org...
[6]http://www.guardian.co.uk...

B. Population growth in relation to resources.
First of all unless I'm very much mistaken, the year is 2013 not 2014. Second while the population may reach 10 billion, it also might not. There could be a massive plague or war which takes out half the population leaving us with a much more manageable 3.5 billion to work with. Is this a favorable solution for most people? Obviously it isn't as half the population will die, but it is a solution and is a very real possibility. Or perhaps the world will take a leaf out of China's book and institute a one-baby policy. Some estimates put China at a zero population growth rate (ZPG) by 2030. [1] How is this not possible for the entire globe?

[1] http://news.xinhuanet.com...

C. The colonization of other planets is absolutely possible. SpaceX, a company which is only 11 years old as of March 2013, has already achieved rocket launches that are massively cheaper [1] than anything that's happened before and company founder Elon Musk states that it is his personal goal to see Mars colonized with an 80,000 person city. [2] Their new Falcon Heavy, which is classified as a heavy lift launch vehicle will be able to carry a payload that is more than twice what the Space Shuttle could. [3] They've managed to come up with that in a mere decade. With the acceleration of the progress curve of the new space race we can expect other companies to build off of SpaceX's ideas and to produce their own unique innovations as the global fervor for spaceflight is only likely to increase. There is no way Pro can say with certainty that in 50 years we won't have colonized Mars or the Moon or who knows what else in light of the very rapid and recent progress made by private companies such as SpaceX.

[1] http://articles.washingtonpost.com...
[2] http://www.wired.com...
[3] http://www.spacex.com...

D. Pro states that the only way to save us is to develop a 'globalize' government. Which I believe should have a "d" on the end there. Either way, that is obviously not the case. The world is already an extraordinarily globalized place. Most developed countries are allies and trading partners with eachother at least to an extent. Look at NATO. We obviously have notable troublemakers such as North Korea but the world has seen what happens to its peoples and lands when it becomes one big battlefield and it doesn"t really work out well for anyone in the end. While it's not that farfetched to imagine WWIII, it's also not so farfetched to imagine it not happening. If a massive immediate global threat emerged (an ELE), and we had the time to face it, then it's absolutely possible that the world's governments and peoples will begin to work in concert to find a solution without necessarily establishing some supreme global power seat, unlikely and unprecedented though it would be.

If a globalized government does manifest: you say that

'population control = massacres, starvation, death by poverty and disease resulting in smaller population.'

as stated in section B population control is possible through a number of different avenues, not necessarily through massacres and death by poverty.

'control/resources = Sets forth to develop means to transport a growing population to another planet if one is found
and finds out that this is not possible for several reasons.'

Pro has not provided these reasons for the debate. Con has provided a few points in response to section C. which illustrate that transport to other worlds is indeed possible. Pro then goes on to say how resources will be wrongly spent on certain projects, that revolution begins to stir etc. This section of Pro's argument was prefaced with a sentence that ended in:

'multiple things can happen:'

Pro then proceeds to name a few of those things, some of which I've specifically addressed. However, by merely writing 'multiple things can happen' Pro has validated Con's entire argument--any number of things can happen, including mankind finding a solution to all or enough of our problems to effect a change great enough to ensure the continuation of the species either on Earth or somewhere else. It could happen. Pro listed a few possible scenarios, which, even if they are the most plausible outcomes for the future of mankind, they are not, cannot be, the only outcomes possible.
Debate Round No. 2
Donjaundebater1212

Pro

With all Due respect I feel I rushed into this arument to quickly. I feel I should re evaluate my points and post a new debate when I feel I understand the topic more clearly. Thank you for pointing out my mistakes and giveing me a new way to look at this topic. You win.
wiggityp

Con

Fair enough. Good go at it though. I'm game to go anytime. This is my first debate on the site. Is there something we need to do to end the debate? I didn't see anything on the main page...
Debate Round No. 3
Donjaundebater1212

Pro

Sounds good. And simply fill all the "Round" boxes to begin the voting period.
wiggityp

Con

I didn't see the round boxes...but presumably posting this last round will do the trick...
Debate Round No. 4
7 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 7 records.
Posted by Torvald 3 years ago
Torvald
I'd forgotten how funny new users are.
Posted by wiggityp 3 years ago
wiggityp
Or perhaps it is because you don't vote on your own debates? That would seem logical.
Posted by wiggityp 3 years ago
wiggityp
For some reason the 'cast my vote' button is not clickable. Sorry, this is probably a newb's foolery. Any help?
Posted by thethief 3 years ago
thethief
I recently posted a debate (lecture) under Philosophy. I only quickly browsed through what you wrote (a lot of text...), but I can nearly guarantee that you will find the answers you are looking for. In short, yes it will be tough, but we will manage to advance to a state where we are immortal, but only if we stop helping the weak in need and in stead focus those resources on technology. Yes, nobody likes to see starving people die on TV, but the alternative is worse - especially for us. Some luck is also needed, see section on gamma rays etc. Hope this helps.
Posted by Donjaundebater1212 3 years ago
Donjaundebater1212
Your right I should refine this.
Civilization*mankind* Cannot sustain modern civilization on this planet *earth* for more than 50 years for multiple reasons.
Posted by Torvald 3 years ago
Torvald
I shall be very interested to see how the Pro supports the subject that is based solely on opinion with fact.
Posted by wiggityp 3 years ago
wiggityp
When you say 'Civilization cannot sustain itself for 50 years' do you mean on another planet or could it be on Earth? The debate title says other planet but this is unclear to me. Clarify and I shall challenge.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Torvald 3 years ago
Torvald
Donjaundebater1212wiggitypTied
Agreed with before the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
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Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Made more convincing arguments:--Vote Checkmark3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:21 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro is right, he did sort of rush his argument. Con did admirably well for a new user, but in my opinion did little other than counter Pro's argument. He offered no argument of his own. Both were very well-conducted. While it bothered me that Con used " instead of ', Pro's use of incorrect words (e.g. 'their' instead of 'there') bothered me even more. It seems unquestionable that Pro had better sources, though one less than Con. I'm a little disappointed, actually, as to how this debate turned out. However, as I mused in the comments, Pro wasn't able to do anything more than make suppositions based on the facts. He could have done better. Both could have.