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Space Migration, Species Survival, and Global Responsibility

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In 2013, the SPST published an article, authored by the president of the organization, in the journal, Space and Evolution (SPAEVO), entitled, “The Justification for Human Space Development and Habitation beyond Low Earth Orbit: An Invitation for an open National and Global Dialogue.”[2] The article attempted to refocus and emphasize national and international space efforts on the critical need to enhance and facilitate human space migration efforts as essential for the ultimate survival of the human species and its trans-human and post-human descendants.  While the primary focus was on the essential nature of space migration for increasing the chance for survival of humankind’s genome, the article also redirected attention to using this dictate of nature for saving and enhancing the presently diminishing leadership of the United States in most aspects of space-related activities.., unmanned as well as manned.  The article and subsequent draft White Paper emphasize that the international community, as well as NASA, is “losing extremely valuable time critical for planning and executing habitation beyond low Earth orbit”.  This was considered particularly true as “Earth becomes ever less capable of supporting [an exponentially increasing] human population growth”, along with the terminal competitive activities affiliated with overcrowding experienced by any biotic entity competing for resources necessary for genome.., and at the very least genetic coding and sequencing.., survival and perpetuation.[3]

And the clock keeps ticking.., for a while longer.  Not science fiction.

Under President Barrack Obama, the current U.S. space policy does not seem to notice, let alone accept, the critical nature of space migration by the human species.  Most ongoing space research and development by the government must depend significantly on international cooperation, both public and private, or a reasonable combination of both.  For the present, traditional space-related research and development funding in the U.S. is being diverted to other perceived short- and long-term requirements.  Further, past international cooperative programs sponsored by NASA are diminishing in number and importance as current and former partners are withdrawing into their own national efforts, or working with new partners.

These political realities, along with the increasingly limited fiscal opportunities and a current shattering of world economies, makes the necessity of effective global collaboration in ensuring and enhancing escape velocity for human species migration and that of its altered descendants surviving off-Earth, a somewhat questionable prospect; not to mention the most difficult task of convincing the stay-at-home human population to support this migration.  But, again, nothing is forever.., not even Earth.

In the SPST article and White Paper expanding on the issue of space migration and species survival that was distributed to members of Congress, the Executive Branch, and the general public, SPST recognized this need, but, perhaps unfortunately, in a seemingly more nationalistic rather than global context (i.e., species survival was the motivating construct for funding that is necessary to restore and then maintain U.S. leadership in space exploration, migration, and settlement).   The comparatively precious little time available to ensure the maintenance and
restoration critical for the necessary planning and accomplishment of permanent humankind habitation beyond low-Earth orbit is being lost.  And again, what the White Paper failed to address was the most difficult and fundamental task of convincing the general stay-at-home world population that it would be they who must support the survival of a few select individuals.

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