Mayan apocalypse? Doomsday? Asteroid? How the world will end

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

Mayan ruins in Belize (Fox photo)

Wondering what could cause the Mayan Apocalypse? Just look up at the stars.

According to Fox News, for years conspiracy theorists, numerologists, and armchair prophets have predicted the end of the world will take place on December 21, 2012.

They point to several apocalyptic events: a long-period comet hurtling toward Earth, or a massive solar storm that causes complete power grid failure.

Rob Skelton, who runs and has studied a possible Mayan doomsday event for 15 years, says there is a reason to be concerned.

For the long-period comet, he admits we would normally have spotted one by now — unless it had gone dark and lost its reflective ice.

For the solar storms, he says the Mayans could have found a pattern in low-latitude auroras and predicted a coming disaster.

“Both are only predictable via periods of observation longer than the modern scientific era,” he told

“All I’ve done is find a reason why it could happen this December.”

According to Skelton, a solar storm could wreak havoc in the U.S., knocking out the power grid for months. The U.S. relies on the grid to keep nuclear power plants safe, run factories, and communicate between fire and police forces. Without this key infrastructure, there will be mass pandemonium and destruction, he said.

But will these events happen on December 21?

That’s extremely unlikely, says one NASA scientist.

“This is purely an Internet phenomena,” said David Morrison, an astrobiologist at NASA.

Comets that cause destruction on Earth are extremely rare – they could happen once every 500 million years.

As for the massive solar storms, Morrison says they do happen.

“The power does go out, and that’s not a nice thing and it means people are not happy. But that doesn’t kill millions.” In most cases, even with a major outage, it can take weeks at most, not month, to regain power, he said.

More at: Fox News