Terraforming of Venus

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What Venus looked like in its heyday, roughly 2,250 BCE.
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The terraforming of Venus is the proposed process of engineering the global environment of the planet Venus in such a way as to make it suitable for human habitation once again. Terraforming Venus was first seriously proposed by the astronomer Carl Sagan in 1961 in response to claims by various scientists that, "Climate change on Venus is a myth propagated by the liberal media." There are three major changes that would need to be made in order for Venus to be considered remotely habitable:

  • Surface temperatures would need to be reduced from a roasty 850°F to a balmy 70°F with partly cloudy skies.[1]
  • The carbon dioxide atmosphere would need to be greatly reduced so it wouldn't squeeze organisms to death.
  • Oxygen would need to be added back to the planet in large quantities. Scientists suggest transferring a majority of Earth's Oxygen to our poor neighbor through a process of government oxygen wealth redistribution.

edit A History of Climate Change on Venus

Around the year 4,300 BCE, the Venusians dominated a flourishing biosphere with much diversity. Liquid water oceans and a variety of wonderful species of flora and fauna spotted the planet. The Venusians, however, were also characterized with a greedy disposition that caused them to cling to medieval systems of capitalism and corporatism. The Venusians did not respect their Mother Venus.[2] Industry dominated the landscape and pollution began to accumulate. Many scientists from VASA (Venusian Aeronautics and Space Administration) began to warn of climate change on Venus. No one bothered to listen to them, and carbon dioxide pollution began to accumulate in the atmosphere. By the year 1610 CE (coincidentally the year Galileo Galilei first observed Venus through his telescope), the accumulated carbon dioxide atmosphere had caused surface temperatures to rise to an average of 130°F.

By 1615 CE, the surface temperature had spiraled out of control and all of the breathable oxygen had blown off into outer space. Mass extinction of all life that was left occurred rapidly, including the vast majority of the intelligent[citation needed] life on Venus. By 1616 CE, those Venusians who survived the initial destruction of the biosphere went underground with as many species as they could in order to save what little hope remained for a recovery of the biosphere. None occurred. Famous Venusian radio personality Gwen Becky was quoted as saying in 1622 CE; "Those scientists were wrong! They claimed that the oceans would rise by 50 feet, what nonsense! There aren't any oceans anymore. Their egregious error disproves the theory of Venusipogenic Global Warming once and for all!" This was the last known transmission from the planet Venus.

Today, the climate is completely incompatible for life as we know it. The atmosphere is so dense it would crush any organism to death and is composed almost entirely of unbreathable carbon dioxide. The rotation of the planet was slowed by scientists and engineers in order to expose the planet to more sunlight in the hopes the atmosphere would burn off. The result is that a day on Venus lasts longer than a Venusian year. The Venusian magnetic field was also destroyed by scientists. The reason they did this is presently unclear. VASA probably figured that the planet was doomed as it was anyways, so they might as well do something incredible, hip, and cool in order to inspire future generations of Venusian children to become interested in science. Unfortunately, all the little children burned to death around the year 1618 CE.

edit Process of Terraformation

The first mention that Venus might be rendered habitable through manipulation of the global environment occurred in a pub outside Surrey in 1707 CE. Sir Isaac Newton was on his 8th beer of the evening when Edmond Halley approached him with a bet. The terms of the bet are unclear,[3] but Newton's response is famous throughout the world today:

“Sir, I would presume that you know that what you state is less likely than the clouds of Venus being rendered breathable, but I accept your wager and will forthwith continue to consume copious amounts of alcohol.”

The first serious proposal for terraforming Venus would come in 1961 CE from famous astronomer Carl Sagan. A longtime advocate of extending humanity's reach beyond Earth, Sagan was fascinated with the idea of coupling social and physical engineering. He figured that if the inhabitants of earth bestowed Venus with a gift of oxygen and life, our standing in the Galaxy would be vastly improved. He even contended that Earth's application for a seat at the United Systems in Geneva, Alpha Centauri might be approved in light of such generosity. Sagan's proposal is below.

edit Step 1: Reduce the Carbon Dioxide

Sagan terraforming
Carl Sagan on the surface of the planet Venus doing a publicity stunt on behalf of NASA. Sagan was a big proponent of the terraformation of Venus.

Sagan proposed that the necessary first step in terraforming the planet would be to either convert or get rid of a majority of the Venusian atmosphere. The thick soup of carbon dioxide is entirely unbreathable and is the primary reason that temperatures are so incredibly high on the surface. There are a number of proposed ways to accomplish this, but Sagan's is still considered the most feasible and realistic. Sagan supposed that if the entire phytoplankton population of the Pacific Ocean and the entire Amazon Rainforest were transported to the surface of Venus, the carbon dioxide could be converted into breathable oxygen. This proposal is widely considered the most plausible and ecologically sound solution for Venus.

edit Step 2: Recreating the oceans of Venus

Sagan proposed converting molecules already on Venus into water. His theory was that since oceans existed on Venus prior to the greedy capitalist's destruction of the biosphere and climate, then the atoms that made up the water on Venus had to still be there. This theory does not have much traction today. The leading proposal today for restoring the oceans on Venus comes from Dr. John Christy. Christy argues that the best way to ensure that life can flourish on Venus once again is to create an enormous volume of both fresh water and salty oceans. Therefore, Dr. Christy is a leading advocate of relocating the polar ice caps to Venus in addition to moving the entire Indian Ocean. This would simultaneously create the salty ocean and fresh water supplies needed to sustain complex life. This is considered the leading proposal in scientific circles on Earth.

edit Step 3: speeding up rotation

This, obviously, would consist of strapping very, very large rockets to the equator of Venus. Doing so is considered not only the cheapest method, but the coolest as well. This idea is of course argued by NASA and lobbyists of the space industry. NASA hopes that something so cool will inspire children in America to become more interested in science.

edit Criticism

Leading critics of terraforming Venus include most of the American Right, including personalities such as Rush Limbaugh and Bill O'Reilly among a few scientists financed by the oil industry. Criticism is usually leveled in the form of accusation against the liberal media and the American Left as supporting, "a system of environmental handouts to the Venusians in the form of oxygen and water wealth redistribution that would amount to the destruction of the Earth's biosphere and climate. All forced by the coercive and tyrannical hand of Big Government."[4]

Further criticism of terraformation mostly revolves around the fact that most proposals for terraforming Venus feature the destruction of some sort of ecological feature of Earth. Bill Maher is a prominent political commentator who often speaks out in favor of terraformation. He says that any good environmentalist would support the stabilization of the climate on Venus and the genetic resurrection of life on Venus, including Venusian Jesus. Pope Benedict XVI virulently denies the existence of the Venusian Jesus, calling those who believe he can be resurrected "simple minded fools who reject the foundations of science."

Most proponents of terraformation deny that removing Earth's supply of oxygen to Venus would bring about an extinction event on Earth. Prominent climate scientist Oolon Colluphid was quoted as saying; "Those who are against donating oxygen to Venus have a hidden, insidious agenda. Often they are against environmental charity and often jealously and greedily guard their own supplies of oxygen and water. We are the generous ones, willing to donate by way of government force our excess and abundant oxygen and water to the deprived planet of Venus."

Whether or not transferring as much as 2/3rds of Earth's oxygen and water to Venus is bad for the environment is still up for serious debate.

edit Notes

  1. San Diego's weatherman for Channel 4 News is the most widely cited expert on this topic.
  2. As opposed to Father Mars. Father Mars is considered by some cultures to be Santa Claus' rival. In other cultures, Father Mars is considered the originator of all male life on Earth, as opposed to Mother Venus who birthed into existence all women. Thus, all Men are from Mars, and Women are from Venus.
  3. Much like the historical position that Edmond Halley holds
  4. Tim Tebow in his acceptance speech after God chose him as His personal environmental ambassador to Earth in 2011.

edit See Also

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