The 89-year-old broadcaster of Family Radio has predicted the beginning of Doomsday on May 21st, 2011. His followers have spent millions of dollars advertising that message.
However, his prediction of Doomsday and 200 million Christians being raptured and lifted to heaven did not happen. It was his second failed Doomsday prediction after his first failure in 1994.
Even though his prediction wasn't fulfilled, it would be interesting to imagine the impact of 200 million people disappearing from the earth all at once.
200 million is almost 4 times the number of people who die every year. It's also bigger than the largest number of people killed in a single event in human history (the earthquake in Shaanxi in 1556, which killed 830,000 people).
However, Paul Ehrlich, a professor at Stanford University's Center for Conservation Biology, said with a population of about 7 billion and aiming now to go somewhere in the vicinity of 9 billion, 200 million is not very big, according to LiveScience
He said if the 200 million raptured people were evenly distributed across the world, the ecological impact wouldn't be that great. However, if 200 million people all disappeared from United States, the impact would be much bigger.
America is the country that uses the most of resources in the world; it was responsible for a quarter of the global petroleum consumption in 2009.
Taggert J. Brooks, an economist at the University of Wisconsin, said the knowledge that we have in our heads can be thought of as a type of machinery for how to combine things, how to produce things or provide services, so if 200 million people get snatched up, you lose their human capital.
As time passed by, the economy would adjust to a world without those 200 million people, but the transition from pre- to post-rapture would be not easy at all, Brooks said.
However, he said the psychological impact will be the biggest challenge to cope with. There aren't any models that can account for the disappearance of so many friends and family members, said Brooks.
It doesn't count things like, 'What if your brother or sibling is one of the 200 million?' he said.
But all these worries and theories don't seem to matter at this point because Camping's prediction didn't happen. Moreover, if Camping was proven right, the world will simply end in October 21, 2011, so it's irrelevant to talk about long-term impacts.
Read More : Ten Facts About Harold Camping