Mars’ colonization: bigger needs at hand?

Mars’ colonization is on the map.

Since humanity began creeping into outer space, the promises of not only discovering more about life in the multiverses but also of potential cosmo-migration have been rather riveting. Elon Musk and the SpaceX project are underway to revolutionize the way we view life around us. In his interview for Business Insider and through other outlets, Musk has pledged to dedicate a significant part of his resources and focus to creating a colony on Mars. He is going to part ways with his material possessions in the process to contribute to the project further. However, why and at what cost would humanity be interested in venturing elsewhere instead of preserving the Earth we have here and now?

First of all, the reasons are plenty for humans to effectively do away with the Earth and its many imperfections. Our planet is already pretty exhausted thanks to Industrialization and extreme exploitation of land and fossil fuels at a rate which is hard to recuperate. Mars is quite close, and living there could be feasible if we develop sustainable technology to do so. Besides having a purely scientific interest in Mars, some countries may be rivaling each other to yet again move to another exhaustible and finite place which could turn tensions up, provided things on Earth will “heat up” literally and figuratively. If not for colonization purposes, many companies could be interested in potentially extracting valuable resources off Mars. But nowadays the task seems and is daunting. It probably will be extremely complicated. What that means in our fight to mitigate global warming is that fewer resources are spent trying to overcome the issues of waste, marine life destruction, water levels rising among overheating, and extreme air pollution. Furthermore, if top geopolitical and economic powers do decide to race for Mars, that means leaving behind those who will not have the opportunity to go. Plus, living on Mars is not going to be easy: water, temperature, food, and ultimately the technology to go there, stay alive, and do more than bare survival is going to be a true challenge.

Overall, for now, it seems likely that humanity could go for more exploration and, possibly, extraction of resources in the long run if the benefits outweigh the losses. However, investing in full-blown life on Mars seems rather far-fetched and unrealistic. What good will it do for Earth and the immense world population? Looking at the bigger picture, technology is great and we do need to double down on its development. Yet, reframing the picture and focusing on the bigger needs at hand is something trillion-dollar-industries with money to spare could definitely do to safeguard our current planet.

Oleksandr Seredyuk