Just came back from a Mayan exhibition at the museum. Because of it I recalled that we were told that according to the Mayan calendar the world will end by the end of the year. So I am thinking, it is kind of late for humans to go into Space in order to survive. We don't have the means yet to colonize other planets to save ourselves or the Earth as this article has suggested we should.
Theres bugger all evidence that the Mayans thought this, more likely someone making a buck from an alarmist book. What there is, is the idea that the Mayans thought things went in cycles and the cycle is changing this year in our calendar. but the Hindus have cycles as well so why not use theirs for such alarms.
I do believe the reason we are venturing into outer space, though not consciously, is for the purpose of someday colonizing it so as to take environmental pressure off the Earth. It is for the same reason Christopher Columbus came to the New World, to take pressure off the Old World. The colonization of the New World replenished the Old World in many ways, with new resources and means of doing business. Going into Space should work the same way.
We'd have to go some to be able to shift enough colonists off the planet to make a difference. It'd involve the idea of humongous orbitals or terra-forming and we're no-where near being able to do such things, and if we could do the latter then we'd not have the issue with the environment in the first place.
Even though we haven't yet colonized outer space our venturing into it has already made a difference, taking some pressure off the world's environment and resources. For instance, our seeing pictures of our planet from outer space (1969), in a sea of darkness and looking vulnerable, I think had a positive influence in changing our attitude in dealing with our our environment. Had we not seen Earth like that first I don't think Earth Day (1970) would have been created or the movement that has followed it. I think that vision of Earth changed us forever, making us somewhat more aware and better stewards of our environment than if we hadn't seen it.
I think this a fair point. But the "yet" in your words is pretty unlikely, unless there are some serious developments in the sciences, as we have no practical launch system that can lift the kind of materials we'd need out of the gavity well. It'd begger the worlds resources to do it with the tech we have now.
At best our aim should be to get to the resources of the asteroid belts, that at least may help with our environmental problems due to our energy and material needs. But again its a fair way off. I think if anyones going to do it, it'll be the Chinese as they have the manpower to waste in the attempt and with a billion people wanting tellys and cars the economic need.
Although there is one way, the old Orion spaceship model. But I doubt anyone is going to allow that or even the transportation of the nuclear materials into Earth orbit. Still, could we just launch the ICBMs into orbit?