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Time for humans to start thinking about moving says Hawking

For many years humans have dreamed of one day colonizing other planets and moons.  Although research would be an important reason for the foreign bases, could the survival of the human race depend on whether or not we can colonize other planets?  World-renowned astrophysicist Stephen Hawking recently said that humans need to colonize a planet or moon because the Earth might face destruction -- A man made disaster -- global warming being a good example -- or natural disaster could potentially destroy the planet. 

Although he believes humans can colonize the moon within 20 years, and establish a sufficient base on Mars within 40 years, humans "won't find anywhere as nice as Earth," unless we visit another solar system.  The moon looks to be like an ideal place for a potential new colony.  Not only does it appear to have everything needed to sustain humans, ice has also been found at its poles.

Nations have been thinking about colonizing other planets for years.  DailyTech earlier reported that NASA is working towards a permanent moon base that would be a stepping stone to allow astronauts to explore Mars firsthand.  Swedish researchers are also studying different ways to have a self-sustaining colony on the moon.


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We're all doomed!!!!!
By degziebob on 6/15/2006 7:35:10 AM , Rating: -1
..in the end it doesn't really matter. The human race is doomed. We are merely an insignificant blip on the history of the earth. When Global Warming really hits us, & hits us hard, it will be too late. Countries & Politicians are more interested in the short term, here-now attitude.

Countries will turn into deserts or ice wastelands ... humans as we know them will dwindle away .... & eventually all die ... 10's of thousands of years in the future .. aliens will land after finding the voyager 1 probe & will come to an earth long dead, with no life .... they will find some buildings still in tact in an ancient land call China... with strange artificats & symbols.. some will interpret 'McDonalds Happy Meal Toy' as the leader of the Humans & will launch a beacon to orbit the earth until it's destruction. It will read 'SuperSize this' ... beep.




RE: We're all doomed!!!!!
By masher2 (blog) on 6/15/2006 9:28:50 AM , Rating: 2
> "When Global Warming really hits us, & hits us hard, it will be too late..."

An interesting article yesterday, entitled "Scientists Respond to Gore's Warnings of Climate Catastrophe". Some excerpts:

quote:
Professor Bob Carter of the Marine Geophysical Laboratory ... "Gore's circumstantial arguments are so weak that they are pathetic. It is simply incredible that they, and his film, are commanding public attention."...

Carleton University paleoclimatologist Professor Tim Patterson testified, "There is no meaningful correlation between CO2 levels and Earth's temperature...when CO2 levels were over ten times higher than they are now, about 450 million years ago, the planet was in the depths of the absolute coldest period in the last half billion years...

Dr. Wibjörn Karlén, emeritus professor, Dept. of Physical Geography and Quaternary Geology, Stockholm University, Sweden, [says] that the 'mass balance' of Antarctica is positive - more snow is accumulating than melting off....

[Climatology Researcher] Dr. Dick Morgan, points out that, in addition to the cooling in the NW Atlantic, massive areas of cooling are found in the North and South Pacific Ocean; the whole of the Amazon Valley; the north coast of South America and the Caribbean; the eastern Mediterranean, Black Sea, Caucasus and Red Sea; New Zealand and even the Ganges Valley in India...

Carter does not pull his punches about Gore's activism, "The man is an embarrassment to US science and its many fine practitioners, a lot of whom know (but feel unable to state publicly) that his propaganda crusade is mostly based on junk science."


http://www.canadafreepress.com/2006/harris061206.h...



RE: We're all doomed!!!!!
By TomZ on 6/15/2006 10:36:30 AM , Rating: 2
Bravo on that post, masher2. People don't seem to think about the sources of the "facts" they get, and they fail to realize the alterior motives that might be intertwined. Gore is a perfect example, since he is still in effect running his presidency campaign. What would qualify him as an expert on global warming?

Bottom line here is that politicians are most powerful when their citizens are living in a state of fear . If we didn't have to worry about being protected from global warming, terrorists, bird flu, the economy, etc., etc., then we might feel empowered to realize and speak up that they are not doing their jobs.


RE: We're all doomed!!!!!
By Ringold on 6/15/2006 11:19:04 AM , Rating: 2
I'd agree that there may be no consensus (then again, there's no consensus on gravity, since how it works is theory and at a minumum of once a year its properties surprise us in a lab), but the other risks should be considered. Gamma ray burst; we'd be dead before we realized it, and Earth's been hit before. Asteroid impacts could render render the surface and miles below the surface in to something akin to Venus in temperature. Accidental nuclear pissing contest, or an intentional one. Mass extinction that catches us off guard, plunges the planet in to starvation with every man, or small town or gang, for themselves. Even if humanity survived on Earth, it could get sent to the stone age.

In any of the above the only option would be to move forward elsewhere.. and maybe return later to try to recivilize survivors.

There's also economic reasons.. Only so many raw materials here, and virtually no He3, which is common on the surface of the moon, baked in by solar wind. Russians already have a commercial mining venture on the front burner. And to a lesser degree, cultural and scientific enrichment, and national pride.

Costs can be defrayed by business ops and privatization, so.. basically.. why not?


RE: We're all doomed!!!!!
By TomZ on 6/15/2006 11:25:16 AM , Rating: 2
I'm certainly not against it, as long as taxpayer dollars are not wasted without any real benefit.


RE: We're all doomed!!!!!
By johnsonx on 6/15/2006 12:06:01 PM , Rating: 2
Yes, but almost all tax dollars now ARE wasted without any real benefit.

So what's the difference?


RE: We're all doomed!!!!!
By bpurkapi on 6/15/2006 1:25:48 PM , Rating: 2
That source is equivelent to fox news, many of the writers also contribute to the drudge report. The problem with that post is that you are showing that 10 scientists disagree, which is fine, but to say 10 scientists equal the definitive perspective on global warming is a mistake.
This kind of news always irks me, a newspaper talks exclusively to the scientists that are against global warming and then says that scientists disagree that global warming exists. All in all this article is crap, because there are no perspectives on the other side, so you can take this slanted article and throw it away, its not news or even informative. The point of science is to debate, this was no debate, it was a one sided affront to science spurred by someone's agenda.


The Sky IS falling. Honest. I swear.
By masher2 (blog) on 6/15/2006 2:26:54 PM , Rating: 2
> "That source is equivelent to fox news..."

When you can't attack the messenger, attack the message eh? The facts quoted in the article are indisputable. Global Warming (and cooling) of much greater magnitude has occurred many times in the Earth's history...all without human action. As for the current trend, there is no hard evidence that it will continue, and no proof man is even causing any of it, much less the majority.

Furthermore, there is no evidence that even the IPCC's own estimate of maximum warming would be more harmful than beneficial. In other words, it may be GOOD for humanity. The vast majority of warming seen is in the coldest, driest areas...the tropical regions are seeing no warming...some are even cooling slightly. Growing cycles will increase slightly. Subarctic regions become more habitable. Hurricane intensity may actually *decrease* (storms are driven by temperature differentials, and global warming decreases those differences).

Finally, nothing short of us moving back to the stone age will cause mankind to stop generating CO2 entirely. Therefore, IF global warming is a long-term trend, and IF mankind is contributing to it, and IF that trend is ultimately harmful (three huge "ifs") we are looking for solutions in the wrong place. In that case, actively cooling the Earth is the only long-term solution. I've seen a half-dozen proposals for such...many of which appear more tenable and less costly than trying to convert the world off a combustion-based economy altogether.



By masher2 (blog) on 6/15/2006 3:54:07 PM , Rating: 2
> "When you can't attack the messenger, attack the message eh? "

Reversed that, *blush*...


RE: The Sky IS falling. Honest. I swear.
By rcc on 6/15/2006 5:25:46 PM , Rating: 2
This is totally off in left field, however, I read an interesting Novel recently. The author claimed a solid scientific basis for his story background, but I haven't had a chance to check on it.

Per the story, following the historical cycles, Earth should currently be in a minor ice age, however, because of the human influence, it has been offset by global warming. So, when the environmentalists finally get their way and reduce the CO2/hothouse gasses, it triggers the ice age. So now you have glaciers expanding through the most of the main worldwide food growing belts. People trying to survive the new winters without burning anything including heating oil. Science and technology were bad words, etc. And of course the environmental folks in power are blaming it all on the scientific advances of the preceeding century.
Entertaining from a certain warped perspective.

But, it does add another page to the "beware what you ask for" book.


By masher2 (blog) on 6/15/2006 5:28:55 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
> "Per the story, following the historical cycles, Earth should currently be in a minor ice age, however, because of the human influence, it has been offset by global warming. So, when the environmentalists finally get their way and reduce the CO2/hothouse gasses, it triggers the ice age."


Sounds like Niven's Fallen Angels.


RE: The Sky IS falling. Honest. I swear.
By FoxFour on 6/15/2006 10:31:31 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Hurricane intensity may actually *decrease* (storms are driven by temperature differentials, and global warming decreases those differences).


I was under the impression that extreme weather phenomena increase in quantity and magnitude as the overall heat energy in the atmosphere and oceans (which roughly translates into average global temperature) increases ... it's been quite some time since I did any research on the matter, though, so correct me if I've got it mixed up.



By masher2 (blog) on 6/16/2006 9:01:04 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
> "I was under the impression that extreme weather phenomena increase in quantity and magnitude as the overall heat energy in the atmosphere and oceans (which roughly translates into average global temperature) increases "


No, not quite. If the Earth was one uniform temperature from pole to pole, there'd be no storm activity whatsoever...regardless whether that temperature was 5 degrees or 500. Storms are driven by temperature differentials...the larger the differential, the more energy available to the storm.

Now, if you raise the average temperature but don't change the differential (e.g. tropics and temperate regions of earth both warm equally), storms get more severe. However, global warming isn't doing this. The tropics aren't warming, but everything else is. So in the latitude band where all hurricanes form, temperature differentials are decreasing.


RE: We're all doomed!!!!!
By November2 on 6/19/2006 6:32:39 PM , Rating: 2
Masher2 - Check your sources. CanadaFreePress is a right-wing conservative publication that posts on their about us page a guy that has worked at Fox News and NewsMax. In case you don't know Newsmax possibly the worst source to cite with Fox News a close second in big-busines/conservative spin machine publications.

There is a lot of information out there and you choose to quote some biased politically minded rag from Canada? Think way back to high school when you wrote a paper, remember that last page, that's where you cite your sources and if you give junk sources you get a failing grade. The fact of the matter is there is a ton of information out there that the academia agree on, GLOBAL WARMING IS REAL. Just because you quote some bogus, biased article probably payed for by some big oil company in Canada(second in supply to the Saud's) like Imperial or Mobil. Come on with your re-spin, calling Gore's movie junk science is like calling you rant coherent.

Masher2 - Grade F


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