Modern humans, scientifically known as Homo sapiens is not the only human species that lived on planet earth. According to experts, there could be at least six human species that lived on earth nearly three million years ago.
Until now, scientists have proposed different theories to explain the reason behind their extinction from earth, and a new study report published in the journal One Earth has suggested that climate change has played a crucial role in shaping the evolutionary history of the human species.
How ancient human species went extinct?
The research team led by Professor Pasquale Raia of the Universita di Napoli Federico II in Naples, Italy suggested that Homo sapiens finally emerged as the only human species that survived climate change. To make this conclusion, researchers conduct climate simulations from the past five million years and examined data from 2,750 archaeological records.
In their study report, researchers noted that hominins, a human species that lived in Africa around three million years ago disappeared before 10,000 years, and scientists believe that it could be due to the negative impacts of climate change.
"Our findings show that despite technological innovations including the use of fire and refined stone tools, the complex social networks, and - in the case of Neanderthals - even the production of glued spear points, fitted clothes, and a good amount of cultural and genetic exchange with Homo sapiens, past Homo species could not survive intense climate change. They tried hard; they made for the warmest places in reach as the climate got cold, but at the end of the day, that wasn't enough," said Pasquale.
Researchers also noted that the extinction of Neanderthals was catalyzed also due to the tough competition they faced from Homo sapiens.
Modern humans should consider climate change seriously
Since the second half of the 20th century, several scientists have warned that climate change due to human activities on planet earth could wreak havoc, and it may even make the planet inhabitable in the future.
Pasquale believes that modern humans should learn lessons from the past, and it will be very much necessary to assure the existence of humans on earth, amid worrying concerns about climate change.
"We found that just when our species is sawing the branch we're sitting on by causing climate change. I personally take this as a thunderous warning message. Climate change made Homo vulnerable and hapless in the past, and this may just be happening again," warns Pasquale.