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Bill Gates Warns Next Two Threats To Humanity Are Climate Change And Bioterrorism

Bill Gates Warns Next Two Threats To Humanity Are Climate Change And Bioterrorism

He was right about the pandemic, so perhaps we should listen

Tom Wood

Tom Wood

Microsoft chief Bill Gates has given an interview in which he's warned against two potential future dangers that could be even worse than the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

To be fair, it's worth listening to him, as in 2015 he warned the world was unprepared for the next epidemic, predicting the rapid spread of 'a virus where people feel well enough while they're infectious that they get on a plane or they go to a market'.

Gates' latest prediction isn't exactly jolly either, as he believes the greatest threats to humanity - outside of this wretched virus - are climate change and bioterrorism.

All the way back in what now feels like the distant past, Gates gave a TED talk entitled 'The Next Outbreak? We're Not Ready'.

In that, he spoke of the potential for a virus similar to Covid-19 and stressed the world needed to be prepared for such an eventuality.


At the time, he said: "If anything kills over 10 million people in the next few decades, it's likely to be a highly infectious virus rather than a war.

"Not missiles, but microbes."

Well, he's back making bold predictions again, and we could probably do well to listen up this time, rather than remarking about it after the fact.

Appearing on YouTube channel Veritasium alongside host Derek Muller, he said: "There's no good feeling that comes with something like this saying 'I told you so'.

"Could I have been more persuasive?

"There are a number of respiratory viruses and from time to time one will come along.

"Respiratory diseases are very scary because you're still walking around on a plane, a bus when you're infectious. Unlike some other diseases like Ebola where you are mostly in a hospital bed by the time viral load infects other people."


He then offered his predictions for the future, telling Muller: "One is climate change. Every year that would be a death toll even greater than we have had in this pandemic."

What a cheery thought. He then added: "Bio-terrorism. Somebody who wants to cause damage could engineer a virus and that means the cost, the chance of running into this is more than the naturally-caused epidemics like the current one."

Oh, and he also said there is no way that humans will be able stop future pandemics, although he did add that 'we could increase our preparedness so we never have a death toll anywhere near what we have today'.

The good news is the future isn't written yet, and we still have a chance to stop climate change. If everyone does their bit - not least huge corporations whose effect on the global climate essentially makes individual recycling pointless - we can turn the tide.

Then we'll only have to deal with the pandemics and bioterrorism.


Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: World News, Celebrity, Coronavirus, Technology, bill gates, Covid-19