shit, where did i leave my kids?

According to a recent episode of Nova, the earth’s magnetic field is dissipating at such a rate that by the next millennium (approx. 20 generations from now), it will be all but gone, rendering us defenseless against fallout from the sun’s radiation storms, and essentially burning earth into a crisp. Like Mars.
A more immediate concern: we’re overdue for a “magnetic flip” (the reversal of magnetic fields that would make the South Pole North and the North Pole South). The earth’s magnetic field flips, on average, every 250,000 years, but there hasn’t been a flip in 700,000 years.
Most of the world’s animals’ migratory practices rely on the magnetic field. For instance, the loggerhead turtle has tiny magnets in its body which guide it to the shore where it laid its eggs. The pelican has a magnet in its eye, which produces a constant spot in its vision indicating the location of the north pole, enabling it to navigate the horizon and find land.
As for humanity, well… for one, our entire power grid is reliant upon the continued existence and stability of the magnetic field as it currently exists.
My favorite quote from the program’s website: “Most of us like stability in our lives, especially when it comes to planet-wide phenomena, such as the daily appearance of the sun or the periodic change of season.” Let us present an award to the creators of Nova for understatement.

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