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Friday, October 24, 2008

Interplanetary Refugees

Scientists believe, however, that it would take hundreds of thousands of years before the half of Europe could submerge in floodwaters. What will happen if the human race has already reached the hundreds of thousands of years? Half of Europe will be under water. What will happen if another hundreds of thousands of years has elapsed and global warming has continued? All of Europe will go under water but global warming is not all about ice melting alone. While some parts of the earth may suffer from insuperable flooding, other parts may suffer from excruciating heat. Earth’s conditions will become hostile to life.

Do you know what scientists envision just in case the planet earth could no longer sustain life? (Of course, this is merely in the point of view of science). Human race might consider leaving earth and transfer to a more suitable planet. Well, the nearest planet could be Mars. However, the prevailing conditions in Mars and in its atmosphere, does not seem to be hospitable for interplanetary refugees from earth unless we can do something about it. What are we going to do? Scientists have conceptualized “terraforming”.

Terraforming is forming another planet’s terrain into one that is similar to earth. In simple terms, it is about shaping a planet into the image of the earth. The only planet in the solar system that is suitable for this ambitious undertaking is Mars because scientists believe that Mars seems to have once had a denser atmosphere and free water on its surface.

How do scientists propose to do this? The first proposition is to produce huge amounts of carbon dioxide in Mars to bring about an artificial greenhouse effect. That occurrence will reproduce the conditions that once have existed in the planet. Perhaps, putting up large factories on the surface of Mars that will emit carbon dioxide fumes or second, to install huge mirrors in space around the planet to melt down the frozen water and carbon dioxide on Martian soil and so bring about climate change. However, scientists admit that these are very costly propositions, with very long implementation plans but have very uncertain results (For more details, grab a copy of Reader’s Digest 1001 Science Questions Answered).

Doesn’t it sound so weird that the only way to resuscitate a dead planet like Mars is for humans to pollute its atmosphere and create an artificial greenhouse effect? If only there are enough vacuum cleaners in the world to suck up all the greenhouse gases in earth’s atmosphere and then dump them all to Mars, we can hit two birds with one stone: bring to life a dead planet like Mars and revive a dying planet like earth. Doesn’t it sound interesting?

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1001 Science Questions Answered

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