When crude is no longer available (which is in 53.3 years) what will LEGO do, since oil is needed in order to make plastic? Is there a plastic alternative, or another type of material that is strong and durable like ABS plastic?
They're working on it! Should be ready in 15 years.
Hmmm... would have to be something relatively light, slightly flexible but also mostly rigid, preferably waterproof/buoyant, easy to mold, and cheap... perhaps some future form of carbon fiber? Or perhaps some organic material that comes from animals, and so is infinitely sustainable...
Our estimated time to run out of crude oil in roughly 500 years. As timeless of a product as LEGO is, I think that playing with them in 500 years will be like playing with rag dolls. And those were more like 350 years ago. After that, boys had guns instead, and girls were learning more productive uses of their time than running around with rags sewn around a walnut and giving them names.
And besides, we probably won't hit that 500 year official estimate, because when something is becoming scarce, you plug your car into a wall instead, and make your coffee cups out of corn. But if we do just chug along and then all the oil just disappears at the 500-year mark, do you really think that plastic won't have been replaced?
Wood was a big deal. Then it was flint/obsidian. Then copper, tin, bronze, iron, steel, plastic, polymer...
I think we'll have either moved on from LEGO or moved on from ABS plastics in 500 years.