Elon Musk has a big idea to save civilization: Move it to Mars. - Grist


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Elon Musk has a big idea to save civilization: Move it to Mars.

Sounding not unlike Libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson, Tesla founder and very rich man Elon Musk detailed his vision for the future at a SpaceX event Tuesday.

“Someday soon,” Musk said, “there will be an extinction event on Earth.” We can either wait for it to kill us all, or “become a spacefaring species.” And by that, Musk means, we should hitch a really big rocket to a really big spaceship, pack up the Fiestaware, and move to Mars.

Of course, there are a few small barriers to surviving on Mars once we get there — little things like temperature, atmosphere, gravitational pressure, and lack of potable water. Musk’s answer? Terraforming Mars, or releasing carbon dioxide into the atmosphere to heat up the planet and unlock water now frozen under the icecaps. In other words: Create climate change on another planet.

None of this will be cheap, but considering Musk’s vast personal fortune and history of using cost-cutting practices like prison labor, we have a feeling he’ll figure out how to make it work. Because why bother saving the planet you already have when you can just get a new one?