|A case study of the inhabitants of Easter Island served in part as the basis for a mathematical model showing the ways a technologically advanced population and its planet might develop or collapse together.|
| Did climate change already kill all the aliens we’ve been searching for?
According to astrophysicist Adam Frank, it’s certainly a
possibility — and whether humans are doomed to the same fate may already be out of our hands.
Frank, a professor of physics and astronomy at the University of Rochester in New York, is the lead author of a new paper published May 1 in the journal Astrobiology that aims to take what Frank calls a “10,000-light-year” view of anthropogenic (human-caused) climate change. Using mathematical models based on the disappearance of a real-life lost civilization here on Earth (the former inhabitants of Easter Island), Frank and his colleagues simulated how various alien civilizations might rise and fall if they were to increasingly convert their planet’s limited natural resources into energy.