A Doomsday war seems inevitable because of the ongoing population explosion, total exploitation and consequent exhaustion of one time use resources and the existence of some thirty thousand atomic bombs for immediate use. These trends are accelerating and are all but unseen by the public mind. Even with massive political efforts they would probably be unstoppable and there are few efforts to even speculate about the consequences of these current human ultimately self destructive behaviors. There are already 806 million cars and light trucks on the roads and that is enough of them to consume all of the potential fuel reasonably available in the ground.
To worsen that already moribund human problem about 72 million new automobiles were made last year with, China, Russia, Brazil and India having the most rapid growth. It can’t go on forever and probably won’t go on much longer. This isn’t provocative speculation it is obvious conclusions drawn from obvious facts. Thomas Malthus wasn’t wrong about his ideas of human population being limited by resource production of the Earth he just didn’t realize the human potential to find and exploit coal, oil and air so his timing was off. Actually in a grander time scale his timing is only slightly off because he was thinking about five generations to peak human population and it will be about eleven since he published his idea.
There is a limited amount of those essential things which make modern civilization possible and when they are used up it will be a very long time before they can become available again. It will be a much, much longer time than we humans can afford to wait for and so something will happen which will dramatically change human progress as we now experience it. It won’t be an end of humanity but it will be an end of exploitation of the planet Earth as we now know it. Once we face that inevitability we can make preparations for more properly coping with our new situation, which if we do it well will lead to many millennia of happy, healthy, wise and wealthy humans.
By the year 2099, well within the life expectancy of many people now living, a new world will come into existence. That great change can be said with categorical confidence because the current society can not maintain itself that long and will change dramatically, one way or another. The most dramatic change will probably be a really horrible war, far worse than any war before, which will reduce humanity to a modest number. However, those survivors will have the opportunity to found a new type of civilization, one which will be in long term balance with natural resources. If they fail to do that there will be another Doomsday war, and another and another until they do succeed in establishing a small population.
But once that is accomplished, stabilized and appreciated humanity could survive for a very long time. Total population would be much smaller than it presently is but it would be in balance with the Earth and that could be sustained forever. The ultimate number of humans and maximum of human happiness would be attained by this smaller number existing for a much longer period of time.