Bill Gates Warns About Bio-terrorism and How it Could Affect Over 30 Million People
Speaking at a conference in Munich, Microsoft founder Bill Gates addressed people saying that the next worldwide threat will most likely be a biotechnology attack employed by terrorists. He also went on to compare the pandemic to climate change and nuclear war.
In a speech published by Business Insider, Bill Gates stated that the next pandemic is probably going to come from a terrorist on a computer screen looking to use genetic engineering in an effort of creating a synthetic version of smallpox or a deadly and highly contagious strain of the flu. He went to add that when this bioterrorism attack occurs by the hand of a terrorist or by the quirk of nature, the fast moving airborne pathogen could end up killing more than 30 million people in one year and epidemiologists report that in the next 10 – 15 years, it is likely that the world is going to experience such a dangerous outbreak.
Bill Gates said that the connection between international security and health security has been underestimated and added that governments are not paying enough attention to this type of threat. Just because there hasn’t been a deadly epidemic in recent history does not mean that the world should remain relaxed in a false sense of security and as such, scenarios such as doomsday have the possibility of occurring. Bill Gates reminded the audience in Munich of the massive scale of the flu pandemic that took place in 1918 which ended up infecting over 500 million people and lead to the deaths of 50 – 100 million people worldwide.
Preparation and Consequences.
Bill Gates believes that the catastrophic consequences based on a pandemic are similar to that of climate change and nuclear war. He also went on to add that proper preparation could greatly help to reduce these risks. Such preparation steps could include the creation of new medical arsenals that are designed to deal with various types of pandemics. He also said that people should prepare for an epidemic attack just as military people prepare for war and exercises to understand the behavior of viruses should be conducted. in 2016, the US government conducted such an experiment by releasing a non-harmful gas substance in the New York Subway. According to Bill Gates, some of the necessary requirements to deal with a pandemic also include reducing the time it takes to create a vaccine, surveillance, and improvement in cooperation. He also added that a lack of proper preparation could end up costing over $570 billion every year.
The speech that Bill Gates gave at the Munich Security Conference is not the first time whereby the Microsoft founder has voiced his concerns about bioterrorism. During the World Economic Forum in January this year which was held in Switzerland, Bill Gates also warned about the potential dangers involving bioterrorism and how we should all prepare for it. On December 2016, he spoke to BBC radio and talked about fast spreading diseases and how humans are vulnerable to them.
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