I just came across some very interesting read. (Westeners forgive me if you have already came across or participated in this project-  I know of no one in South Africa who has)  The read was about the Mars One Project. It seems there are about 202 000 people who have already volunteered to take part!

Is Science giving us another home away from this planet? What are predictions of life in Mars? Is Mars stable enough with resources to cater for a 6billion odd of us humans,including other species like domestic animals (for our proteins, obviousloy)? How about plant life, marine life.

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There are many SF stories concerning bioengineering space colonists, and explorers. Sadly their titles excape me at present. I suggest that the first colonists to Mars, from earth, be bacteria, algea, and lickens. Followed up with a multi-generational terra-forming program to amortize costs.

This program would be part of a space mining operation, that would also establish off-Earth habitats as a way to reduce exposure to possible extinction events. Sadly all who leave Earth will need to accept the likelyhood of either not returning, or suffering the ill effects of radiation before stable colonies are established. This will most likely stimulate a major push for robotic space exploration/mining, and/or intentional genetic modification/adaptations.

There have been terrestrial discoveries of bacteria, and some multicellular organisms that survive exposure to high radiation exposure, desication, heat, and pH. These might help with the first genetic experiments. Sadly, our future might consist of strains to our cultural sense of 'revulsion'.


Single-celled organisms may be resistant to poisonous radiation, but humans are not and won't be in the foreseeable future. Without a magnetosphere, humans will never walk the face of Mars without protective gear.

We humans (meaning most probably the Chinese and not NASA the way things are going) will probably establish a research base on Mars someday, but it will never be a terribly hospitable place for people who want to go outdoors in regular clothes and feel the wind in their face, lay down in a field of grass with a picnic basket and a bottle of wine, or throw frisbees for Fido to catch and return.

It is too far away from the Sun for humans to expect that sort of thing. On the whole, a much colder place. 

Terraforming? The big problem is that Mars lacks a magnetosphere and so is unprotected from lethal radiation. 

On the other hands, if living indoors under a dome is your thing, it might be tolerable for a while. 

Story of one successful candidate from Ireland here.

No matter what, I can't see a colony in our lifetimes.  The idea is still too far ahead of our technology.

Actually it exceeds our present cultural imagination!

Sadly in time we will be mostly using our imagination to survive climate change.

Sadly in time we will be mostly using our imagination to survive climate change.

Sad but true.

We are almost all still at a doggies and horseies stage of intellectual development. Most of my family are 'head in sands'. Many of my tight network of friends are 'damn we have to changers'. The stars and planets are 'far away', while 'climate change' is so close we can take change for granted, till the seas start chasing us from our back yards, or vacation spots! 

Actually, I think climate change will probably result in having to adapt. If we end up killing ourselves off, it'll be by killing our oceans.


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