The idea of colonisation of Mars (or any other planet).
I do not deny that space exploration has forced technological development in many areas to the benefit of mankind. Whether we should do this at this point in history in preference to other earth rescue activities or what the expenditure ratio should be is a topic for another discussion. What I do not consider to be good humanitarian judgement is to believe that exporting humankind to another planet is sensible (or even possible) if we do not have the will, intention or means to solve the issues we have on earth that can make earth a sustainably habitable place. Hence the priority must be to make earth a sustainably habitable place and then discuss the idea of colonising another planet. Ref: paper on the time line for colonising Mars. The future of space colonization
This is not necessarily the whole, only or most accurate analysis of the proposal but it does illustrate some of the enormous issues that we would need to be addressed.
To quote from this article “At the start of 2016, Hawking warned about the dangers from nuclear war, global warming, genetically-engineered viruses and artificial intelligence (AI).”
Is it not more sensible to put our energies into solving ALL these issues right here on earth? With the will and some effort we can: eliminate the danger of nuclear war; fix global warming; step carefully and in a planned fashion to use ‘genetically-engineered viruses and artificial intelligence’ to our advantage and development not our demise. If we escape to another planet or life sphere wont we be taking all the bad practices with us and starting up a new earth which, like our current earth, will be doomed to fail? And further, we would be attempting to ‘tame’ a new world with all its unknown issues and problems. Surely it is more practical to solve the known issues that we are confronted with here on earth.
Surely if we put our minds and will to the challenge of sustainable comfortable life for all on earth then we will be in an excellent position to be able to put our minds and some of our effort and assets towards moving to another ‘world’ – if we still wanted to of course. And, from such a sustainable state we would have all the time in the world to achieve this adventure successfully.
By the time all these benefits (of colonisation of Mars) come to fruition for the few, the rest of the world will be in total chaos, completely unable to partake or take advantage of these ‘benefits’, the weather will make earth uninhabitable, and even if a viable travel means and a means of survival is developed during this time frame who will be allowed to go & how many & who decides. Sounds like ‘toys for the boys’ to me.
Can anyone produce an economic model that shows the money required to tame an inhospitable planet to make it habitable is LESS than the money required to ensure an already hospitable planet remains habitable??!!
And if it is cheaper to tame and change an inhospitable planet – what is the time scale for that to happen for the mass exodus of 7 billion (and growing) people?
Refer to – The future of space colonization and Stephen Hawking says humans must colonize another planet in 100 years or face extinction for a discussion on the time scale for the colonisation of Mars.