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Time’s running out for ET to evolve

April 22, 2008
I’m not sure the universe is big enough for two species like mankind.
clipped from
Irene Klotz

Earth-like planets have relatively short windows of opportunity for life to evolve, making it highly doubtful intelligent beings exist elsewhere in the universe, according to new research.


Given the amount of time it has taken for human beings to evolve on earth and the fact that the planet will no longer be habitable in a billion years or so when the sun brightens, the UK’s Professor Andrew Watson says we are probably alone.

The University of East Anglia researcher publishes his study, based on a mathematical probability model, in the journal Astrobiology.

Intelligent life appeared relatively late on the scene. Scientists believe the first life forms emerged four billion years ago. Humans have walked the planet for only the last 100,000 years or so.

“Earth’s biosphere is now in its old age,” Watson says.

“It suggests that our evolution is rather unlikely. In fact, the timing of events is consistent with it being very rare indeed.”

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