We Ain’t Terraforming Shit

From a Reddit thread about Bill Nye’s “are you high?!” reaction to Mars colonization:

  • “People have confused the notion of Mars being habitable for bacterial life and perhaps plant life as being habitable for human life. On a terraformed Mars, you would not live there any differently then than you would today. Life would be spent either underground or in bubbles. Reasoning forthcoming.
  • “Mars is tectonically dead. There is no plate movement because the core is either cold or in an extremely energy-poor state from which it will not recover. This means there will be damned insufficient magnetic shielding to protect you from the devastating genetic damage caused by solar rays, and no tectonic sublimation or meaningful volcanism to renew the land over long periods of time.
  • “As a consequence of the aforementioned lack of a sufficient magnetic shielding, the solar wind has been stripping Mars of its atmosphere at a phenomenal rate. The winds on Mars currently have little ability to do any damage, the most severe storm basically just kicking up dust clouds. While that may sound nice, it means there’s not enough air to breathe. “But we’re TERRAFORMING!” you say, “We’ll MAKE new air!” Ballsacks to you, and here’s why!
  • “No one ever addresses the elephant in the room where terraforming is concerned: Where are we getting all the necessary raw material to create the chemical composition of the terraformed Martian atmosphere? Are you all seriously that ignorant? Do you not understand the phenomenal weight of the material we’re talking about? Air is not nothing. It’s matter. It has density and weight and there’s more of it than your mind really has the ability to comprehend outside of a mathematical framework. And again, Mar’s atmosphere is being stripped. You don’t just have to finds one Mars’ worth of air, you have to find an ongoing renewable source of this material! You are flat out smoking cock-weed if you think that’s in any way feasible. That’s not even science fiction, that’s pure fantasy. You may as well have said “OH, Merlin will come and jiggity whippity us up some air with a magic wand” because that has as much credibility as saying “we’ll just make more atmosphere.”. Horse hockey, we will!
  • “Mars is too small. Specifically, it lacks the mass to support us. People in orbit for long periods of time have to do some pretty aggressive, highly disciplined exercising to SLOW DOWN muscular-skeletal degeneration. They can’t even stop it. They HAVE to return to the planet at some point or their bodies will essentially wither. Because Mars has little mass, it has little gravity. It’s only a bit bigger than the moon! No amount of atmospheric dicking around can change that. Anyone who goes to live on Mars is absolutely doomed to a slow, and likely short, painful life of bodily degeneration.

“tl;dr – we ain’t terraforming SHIT. And these, and other similar problems will follow us ANYWHERE in the galaxy we may one day be able to go. We evolved to live HERE, and you all had damn well better get the stars out of your eyes because here is a fucking mess we must clean up.”

Full thread in context.

Image source.