It seems a poor alternative to living on Earth, and certainly a major step down in terms of quality of life. Excellent article and worthy of discussion and serious thought. The thin atmosphere also means that heat cannot be retained at the surface. Mars is the easiest planet for Earthlings to reach, but it isn’t exactly easy to get there. Indeed, modifying humans to make them adaptable to living on Mars will require dramatic changes. Yet despite these and a plethora of other issues, there’s this popular idea floating around that we’ll soon be able to set up colonies on Mars with ease. They are much cheaper than humans because they don’t require a vast support infrastructure to provide things like water, food and breathable air. The … Colonists will also need stable food sources, and figure out a way to keep plants away from radiation. “We are not going to go to the moon or Mars because of population pressure,” he explained. The Red Planet is a cold, dead place, with an atmosphere about 100 times thinner than Earth’s. “But it also sounds a bit pie-in-the-sky,” she said. What reasons do we have to invest the resources required to establish a human presence on Mars? There are many reasons why we shouldn’t go like, it is too expensive, and that it is very dangerous. For one, the Moon lacks an atmosphere to protect … Mars offers no natural protection against solar radiation and galactic cosmic rays. I identify five reasons offered by advocates of colonization… Air pressure on Mars is very low; at 600 Pascals, it’s only about 0.6 percent that of Earth. The feeling was that humans would find a way to occupy every nook and cranny of the planet, no matter how challenging or inhospitable, he said. Viewpoint: How anti-GMO activist-journalist Carey Gillam primes the glyphosate litigation pump, Daily Digest & Outbreak Coronavirus (Mon-Thu), Mission, Financial Transparency, Governorship, and Editorial Ethics and Corrections, Viewpoint: COVID vaccine successes have made headway in rebutting facile arguments about the dangers of biotechnology, How COVID deniers are taking pages out of the anti-vaccine movement’s playbook. But the further north you go, the rougher the conditions get on the surface. Unless we radically adapt our brains and bodies to the harsh Martian environment, the Red Planet will forever remain off limits to humans. Life in this closed environment, with limited access to the surface, could result in other health issues related to exclusive indoor living, such as depression, boredom from lack of stimulus, an inability to concentrate, poor eyesight, and high blood pressure—not to mention a complete disconnect from nature. “We don’t yet understand the safety or health implications. In his latest book, On the Future: Prospects for Humanity, cosmologist and astrophysicist Martin Rees addressed the issue of colonizing Mars rather succinctly: By 2100 thrill seekers... may have established ‘bases’ independent from the Earth—on Mars, or maybe on asteroids. An experiment that had vast possibilities but has the fatal flaw of hubris. Secondly, This would cost lots of money, And we could spend money on better things such as fixing our Earth, Which leads to my third point, That we should fix our Earth first … 10 Good Reasons Not to Colonize Mars Robert Walker , Science 2.0 August 15, 2013 Mars is a fascinating planet, the most like Earth of all the planets in the solar system, and may help us to understand much about the origins of life on Earth. This leads Nick Bostrom to argue that failing to colonize space would be tragic because it would mean that these potential “worthwhile lives” would never exist, and this would be morally bad. Here’s why, Conspiracy promoter Mike ‘Health Ranger’ Adams built online disinformation Natural News online empire that subverts science, report finds, Mike Adams: Natural News, “everyone’s favorite über-quack #1 anti-science website”—”even the quacks think he’s a quack”, Mission, Financial Transparency, Governorship. There are also those who think that even if we can colonize other planets we shouldn't for a variety of reasons, either ethical, political, or social. Mars One has grabbed headlines lately, SpaceX states Mars colonization as its long term goal, and there are numerous smaller groups. Of course, one easy way to minimise the risk of contamination is to send robots to Mars instead of humans – the second argument against a manned trip to Mars. We can’t do this work without your help. “Yes, there would be physiological and neural changes that would occur on Mars due to its partial-gravity environment,” she told Gizmodo. 6. Unless we radically adapt our brains and bodies to the harsh Martian environment, the Red Planet will forever remain off limits to humans. We shouldn't colonize Mars. “People like to be optimistic about the idea of colonizing Mars,” Seidler, a specialist in motor learning and the effects of microgravity on astronauts, told Gizmodo. “Establishing stable resources to live off for a long period of time is possible, but it’ll be tough,” said Horgan. ... Mars is even more expensive, and we aren't likely to get the funds back directly. “But if we’re doomed to be a single-planet species, then we need to recognize both psychologically and technologically that we’re going to have live within the limits of Earth.”. Briony Horgan, assistant professor of planetary science at Purdue University, said Martian terraforming is a pipedream, a prospect that’s “way beyond any kind of technology we’re going to have any time soon,” she told Gizmodo. And that’s assuming humans could even reproduce on Mars, which is an open question. With this in mind, it’s an open question as to how Martian colonists might fare upon a return visit to Earth. They just want to be the first people on a new planet. Not only does it not support life, but it turns out those charming craters aren’t just lovable scars from millions of years ago. Even if Mars is a lifeless planet, whether it’s ethical to colonize Mars may depend on what kinds of consequences the mission has here on Earth. All of which suggests that the problem is "more of an issue for colonization outside of the solar system." Within a few years, Mars will be a suitable place to live. This GLP project maps contributions by foundations to anti-biotech activists and compares it to pro-GMO industry spending. My work has shown an upward shift of the brain within the skull in microgravity, some regions of gray matter increases and others that decrease, structural changes within the brain’s white matter, and fluid shifts towards the top of the head.”. I know, it's a weird question, but as technology improves, it's bound to come up sooner or later. “We could quantify the risks for about a year, but not over the super long term. We all dream of journeying (or living) among the stars. It can ‘learn’ how to control movements in microgravity despite the altered sensory inputs. When it comes to terraforming Mars, there’s also the logistics to consider, and the materials available to the geoengineers who would dare to embark upon such a multi-generational project. … Mars is the best target for colonization in the solar system because it has by far the greatest potential for self-sufficiency. “A lot of people approach it as thinking we shouldn’t limit ourselves based on practicalities, but I agree, there are a lot of potential negative physiological consequences.”. Yes, the use of biotechnology, GMOs or gene editing to develop antigens for treatments including vaccines are part of the solution. Are most GMO safety studies funded by industry? Podcast: Unreliable COVID tests; Amazon’s creepy Halo health band; Celebrate pesticides? And even if we do develop therapies to treat humans living on Mars, these interventions are likely to be limited in scope, with patients requiring constant care and attention. [We] (and our progeny here on Earth) should cheer on the brave space adventurers, because they will have a pivotal role in spearheading the post-human future and determining what happens in the twenty-second century and beyond. A strong case could even be made that, for prospective families hoping to spawn future generations of Martian colonists, it’s borderline cruelty. This article offers two arguments for the conclusion that we should refuse on moral grounds to establish a human presence on the surface of Mars. Thus, for decades and perhaps longer, it will be necessary, and forever desirable, for Mars to be able to import specialized manufactured goods from Earth. This can result in a poor sense of balance and compromised motor functions, but research suggests astronauts in microgravity eventually adapt. “It is really because we have an innate desire to explore.” Mars also has less mass than is typically appreciated. The regolith, or soil, on Mars is toxic, containing dangerous perchlorate chemicals, so that also needs to be avoided. And it may not even happen. Ok we're onto the second reason why we should not go to Mars. Right now, you are standing on the edge of history. Friedman agrees that, in principle, we could create artificial environments on Mars, whether by building domes or underground dwellings. Neuroscientist Rachael Seidler from the University of Florida says many people today fail to appreciate how difficult it’ll be to sustain colonies on the Red Planet. I think humans will out-breed our ability to feed ourselves long before colonies outside our biosphere become independently viable. live on Mars. Genetic modification would be supplemented by cyborg technology—indeed there may be a transition to fully inorganic intelligences. “If we can’t make it to a nearby planet with an atmosphere, water, and a stable surface—which in principle suggests we could do it—then certainly we’re not going to make it much beyond that,” said Friedman. If that's your motivation, then remember, as soon as the first colonists arrive on Mars then it will already "be done". That we may eventually become an interplanetary or interstellar species remains an open question. I wanted to look at the case against Mars; three reasons humans should leave the red planet alone. “It’s not clear whether these changes would plateau at some point. Until such time, an un-terraformed Mars will present a hostile setting for venturing pioneers. Known by some as the "Environmental Worrying Group," EWG lobbies ... Michael K. Hansen (born 1956) is thought by critics to be ... News on human & agricultural genetics and biotechnology delivered to your inbox. The suggestion that humans will soon set up bustling, long-lasting colonies on Mars is something many of us take for granted. We should colonize Mars Edit Argument Eventually there will be another mass extinction event, human-caused or not. Firstly, It is dangerous to fly there, Especially with young families. Children born on Mars (if that’s even a possibility) might never be able to visit the planet where their species originated. On Earth, bones, muscles, the circulatory system, and other aspects of human physiology develop by working against gravity. This is an “issue that a lot of folks, including those at SpaceX, aren’t thinking about too clearly,” she told Gizmodo. The media say yes; Science says ‘no’. By terraforming, scientists are referring to the hypothetical prospect of geoengineering a planet to make it habitable for humans and other life. Work by NASA’s Scott Wood has shown that recovery time for astronauts is proportionate to the length of the mission—the longer the mission, the longer the recovery. The suggestion that humans will soon set up bustling, long-lasting colonies on Mars is something many of us take for granted. [T]he first argument against human travel to Mars: contamination. How come Elon Musk is so obsessed with Mars? So, it’s these space-faring adventurers, not those of us comfortably adapted to life on Earth, who will spearhead the posthuman era. Which is a good point. As Friedman pointed out, this carries some rather heavy existential and philosophical implications. The billions – if not trillions – of dollars needed to colonise Mars could, for example, be better spent investing in renewable forms of energy to address climate change. We shouldn't colonise mars! Mars’ gravity is less than Earth but large enough to lure gases and form an atmosphere. It might actually be a brutal experience, especially after having experienced years in a partial gravity environment. Casting aside the deleterious effects of radiation on the developing fetus, there’s the issue of conception to consider in the context of living in a minimal gravity environment. Sometime soon, something’s gonna happen that will send you tumbling over into a whole new era of human evolution. As Friedman pointed out earlier, we don’t see colonists living in Antarctica or under the sea, so why should we expect troves of people to want to live in a place that’s considerably more unpleasant? You might as well be exposed to the vacuum of space, resulting in a severe form of the bends—including ruptured lungs, dangerously swollen skin and body tissue, and ultimately death. The arguments above show that we are perhaps not ready to go to Mars – at least, not today. Researchers are studying whether a wonder material used in Mars rovers could help warm parts of the Red Planet rich in water ice. Elon Musk (born in 1971) of SpaceX says he wants to die on Mars—but not on impact. The low gravity may also “confuse” the gestational process, delaying or interfering with critical phases of the fetus’ development, such as the fetus dropping by week 39. Which brings a rather discouraging prospect to mind: We may be stuck on Earth. Is there a Bible passage that justifies why we SHOULDN'T colonize or terraform Mars? You read that right. We don’t know how sperm and egg will act on Mars, or how the first critical stages of conception will occur. There’s no ‘Planet B’ for ordinary risk-averse people. Yes, we must try to keep Earth a habitable place. So while Mars will remain inaccessible to ordinary, run-of-the-mill Homo sapiens, the Red Planet could become available to those who dare to modify themselves and their progeny. 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