Is space or ocean exploration more important?

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Is space or ocean exploration more important?

graphic by Hannah Kopek

graphic by Hannah Kopek

graphic by Hannah Kopek

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Space is an important factor in the continuation of human life. Not only has space furthered our technology and understanding of the environment beyond our world, but also has its hand in correlating peaceful collaborations among our nations.
With the advancement in technology we have been able to improve and eliminate simple and complex obstacles in our daily lives. According to the California Institute of Technology, we wouldn’t have important technology such as home insulation, water purification systems, CAT scans, satelites, artificial limbs, and even portable computers if it weren’t for the exploration of space.
With the rate of increasing pollution, global warming, and damages done to our ozone layer, we might not have time to explore the ocean before we completely destroy it.
According to NASA, colonizing on other planets has been in the works for a while now and with the rate of the damage we cause everyday to the earth, it only raises our growing need for space exploration.
And while these reasons are very important to further exploration of space, one of the overlooked benefits that come from the exploration is that it brings the world together. Space for humanity is the continuation and evolution of our existence, as well as the evolution of our species coming together to agree on our future survival.
It’s incredible how everyone of different nationalities, races, genders, personalities, morals and beliefs can come together to eventually save the human race from its own demise.
Besides, without space, where else is humanity supposed to go to survive?

Ocean exploration is the way to go for many reasons.
The cost of exploring the ocean would be small compared to that of space. Creating spaceships and rovers to withstand atmospheric pressures and the burning point of the return to Earth would be too expensive to even compare the two. According to Space.com, each NASA launch costs around $500 million. According to InFocus Magazine, it only takes $250 million to build sea exploration equipment.
The timeline for results would also work out in the ocean’s favor. According to NASA’s website, it takes four to ten years to build the spaceships and rovers and even longer to prepare them to launch, not to mention the amount of time the ship takes to reach space and return to Earth. Explorers in the ocean could take water samples and bring them to the lab to receive results within a couple of days.
Space exploration is also more dangerous in terms of putting workers’ lives at risk. Incidents such as the orbiter mission STS-51-L that broke apart 73 seconds after the launch and killed all seven crew members on board, has created worldwide panic about the exploration projects.
Why focus on what might be important millions of years in the future for habitation when there are many problems facing the world now that could be fixed? The world needs to focus on the issues that are more prominent. If most of the environmental issues that create hazard in the oceans are fixed, such as oil spills, then the need to explore space for future habitation would be unnecessary. Science shold focus on what is on Earth first and not waste time exploring something that might not ever be required.

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