Cue ominous music

I’ve been putting this off for a while, mostly because the end of the world seems as good a thing as any to put off till later. But ladies and gents, The End Is Near.

Or might be, anyway:

After analysing the eradication of millions of ancient species, scientists have found that a mass extinction is due any moment now.

Their research has shown that every 62 million years – plus or minus 3m years – creatures are wiped from the planet’s surface in massive numbers.

And given that the last great extinction occurred 65m years ago, when dinosaurs and thousands of other creatures abruptly disappeared, the study suggests humanity faces a fairly pressing danger. Even worse, scientists have no idea about its source.

While a study by Berkeley professors cites this apparent cycle, a separate study by British scientists makes another claim to the end of the world: Supervolcanoes.

(And on a more lighthearted note, Exit Mundi catalogues possible ways of the world ending, from aliens and nuclear war to biotech gone awry and tsunami.)

(Observer: “Bad news – we are way past our ‘extinct by’ date,” by Robin McKie [March 13, 2005]; Gristmill: “PS: We’re all going to die” [March 9, 2005]; MSNBC: “Super volcanoes will chill the world someday,” by Robert Britt [March 8, 2005])