Everyone knows Genghis Khan. He was one of the world's most famous conquerors, and he banged so much there's a .5% chance that you're his direct descendant. Yes, you. He killed his way across the continent, conquering and culling so much at one point, the land he possessed was roughly the size of Africa.

National Palace Museum

"I was kinda a big deal."

But one part that gets glossed over is that he was one of the world's first (unintentional) green leaders. Before the '70s and hippie culture, before even industrialization, Genghis Khan cut down on carbon emissions ... by ruthlessly slaughtering people everywhere he went. 

Like a cleansing fire or Thanos, Genghis Khan killed so many people that the world began to heal. Unfortunately, it wasn't a direct one-to-one between him cutting down mouth breathers and Mother Earth sighing in relief. Part of it was that after he cut through a people, deforested areas became greener, leading to carbon in the air going down by 700 million tons. To put that number into perspective, it's about a year's worth of carbon emissions today. The Black Death didn't have as much of an impact as Genghis Khan did. 

Part of the reason it worked so well when he did it was because his reign was about 20 years, which was enough time for some change to start to come about. See, back then, we were still screwing the planet over by killing its lungs -- you know those pollen and fruit producers? Our agriculture efforts were already messing up the planet like a microwave does a burrito. But then came Genghis Khan. He killed 40 million people, which was apparently the exact right number to bring the earth back into a little bit of a nicer shape.

Anthony Quintano/Wiki Commons, Seattle City Council

Please don't let a single billionaire read this article.

While learning that a global mass killing spree led to environmental freedom might make every edgy teen and supervillain piss themselves, duplicating such a thing now would be much harder given we've gotten much better at ruining the planet and keeping it that way. But, at least one time in history, a dude killed the planet back to health while having so many children you could fill a continent. 

Tara Marie writes words at places like here, Panel X Panel, and the Hard Times. She also writes words for the Trailer Park Boys in Trailer Park Boys: Bagged and Boarded. You can tell her if you’re a Khan descendant @TaraMarieWords or by attempting to conquer the world. Either is fine.

Top Image: Gary Todd/Wiki Commons

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