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Pack Your Bags: Human Have Just 100 Years to Get Off Earth to Survive, Says Stephen Hawking

Upcoming series set to show that "Prof. Hawking's ambition isn't as fantastical as it sounds"

Home sweet home?  A computer-generated view depicts part of Mars. (Photo: NASA/JPL-Caltech/flickr/cc)

If the human species is to avert extinction, it's got just 100 years to leave Earth and colonize a new planet.

That's according to noted theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking, who makes the prediction in the upcoming BBC series "Expedition New Earth," set to air later this year as part of its reignited Tomorrow's World programming.

"Professor Stephen Hawking thinks the human species will have to populate a new planet within 100 years if it is to survive. With climate change, overdue asteroid strikes, epidemics, and population growth, our own planet is increasingly precarious," a BBC press statement announcing the documentary says.

The show will explore "if and how humans can reach for the stars and move to different planets" and will take viewers on a global journey that "shows that Prof. Hawking's ambition isn't as fantastical as it sounds—that science fact is closer to science fiction than we ever thought," BBC writes.

It's not the first time Hawking has given time frames for getting off of Earth; still, the century deadline marks a more dire prediction than the scientist made just last year, when he gave humanity 1,000 years to find a new planet to call home.

Speaking in November at the Oxford Union, he said: "I don't think we will survive another 1,000 years without escaping beyond our fragile planet."

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