Over the next five years, NASA plans to send people back to the moon. Looking ahead, NASA is also setting the stage for crewed journeys to Mars, and all this exciting space exploration has inevitably led many people to wonder how much time had elapsed before human beings settle in another world.
Michel Mayor, a scientist, winner of the Nobel Prize in physics, does not like to talk too much about the man leaving the Earth for greener skies. In fact, in a recent interview with AFP the mayor said he saw no way to colonize earth-like exoplanets and that we should spend our considerable resources to keep it healthy instead of dreaming
The mayor sets out his arguments noting that the distance between our planet and neighboring solar systems is absolutely enormous. He is right, of course, and even those exoplanets that seem potentially habitable from our point of view are still too far away for us to be certain.
Even if we knew for sure that a planet was habitable and that humans could exist freely and safely on its surface, we have no real way to get there. Distance, time and security are prohibitive factors, and uprooting our civilization in favor of a new place is not even a distant possibility.
"These planets are far too far. Even in the very optimistic case of a livable planet that is not too far away, say a few dozen light-years, which is not much, it's in the neighborhood, the time to go is considerable, "said the mayor AFP. . "We are talking about hundreds of millions of days using the means we have today. We must take care of our planet, it is very beautiful and remains perfectly habitable. "
The Mayor is particularly concerned about the idea that when humans completely destroy the Earth, we can simply move on, calling it "crazy".  Mankind does not have a lifeboat for the moment, and we may never do it. Technology can allow us to explore other worlds and possibly other solar systems, but it is extremely unlikely that humanity will just pack and leave. With that in mind, it's probably best to keep our only planet in working order.
This article appeared first (in English) on BGR