Stephen Hawking: Earth will be a fireball by 2600



British physicist Stephen Hawking has recently made his latest apocalyptic prediction that the Earth will become a “sizzling ball of fire” within the next 600 years.

Hawking gave the comment through a video at the 2017 Tencent WE Summit in Beijing on Sunday, warning that the planet would be overcrowded by 2600 when power consumption would turn the planet into a fireball.

However, he said humans could still survive for another million years if they “boldly go where no one has gone before”, such as Alpha Centauri – one of the closest star systems outside of our solar system, which is 25 trillion miles (4.37 light years) away.

In the hope to find a livable planet orbiting Alpha Centauri, Hawking, along with Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Russian Internet billionaire Yuri Milner, have backed the 100 million US dollar Breakthrough Starshot initiative which develops tiny ultra-fast light-powered spaceships to send to outer space.

"Such a system could reach Mars in less than an hour, or reach Pluto in days, pass Voyager in under a week and reach Alpha Centauri in just over 20 years," Hawking said at the event.

These figures are in comparison to the world’s fastest spacecraft, which takes about 30,000 years to get there.