Anyone who occasionally watches Sci-Fi knows that the living conditions on Mars are a far cry from the current conditions on Earth. The hardships that humanity would have to face to survive on other planets would be huge.
The question we should ask ourselves is not whether we can survive on a Mars-like planet, but instead how to prevent Earth turning into such an inhospitable place? How can we change our economic paradigm of endless growth, in an era in which human activity impacts Earth’s environment so profoundly?
The biosphere of the Earth is as big as it gets. There is no room to expand; thus, economic growth ultimately comes at the expense of the living space of others. If you look at the Earth from space, it turns out to be a zero-sum game; as humanity continues to grow, we take up more space, leaving less for other species.
Even if we all go organic, become vegan and use only renewable energy, our continuously increasing prosperity and ever-growing population means we will slowly but surely make life impossible for ourselves and other species.
In any other natural process, growth stops as soon as it encounters a limitation. Since the dawn of humanity, our technological abilities have enabled us to overcome these limitations. We will have to intervene in our own growth, if we don’t want to end up on a Mars-like planet.