Discussing the U.S. policy in space at a forum in Washington D.C., Amazon founder Jeff Bezos said that over centuries, humans will be born in space and call it their home.
Through his space company, Blue Origin, Bezos is offering individuals a short trip to space but also has plans of setting up orbiting business parks in the future. Bezos' comment takes the idea several notches higher, where humans are living completely off the planet. Bezos made these comments in the presence of NASA Administrator Bill Nelson, and Director of National Intelligence, Avril Haines at the 2021 Ignatius Forum as the men discussed the U.S. policy in space. You can see the entire discussion below.
This is not the first time Bezos has outlined his plans for space. Business Insider reports that Bezos' obsession with space colonies goes back to his high school days, and how he views space colonies as the answer to existential threats on Earth due to increasing pollution and population.
As Bezos noted at the forum, the colonies would mimic Earth's weather and gravitation pull and even feature rivers, forests, and wildlife. These would be giant spinning cylinders in space that would have the capacity of holding a million people on them. People would be born on them and live their lives on them and the Earth could be conserved like a national park, with people visiting it once in a while.
Bezos had cited a similar vision in 2019 and Elon Musk had snubbed it off.
Makes no sense. In order to grow the colony, you’d have to transport vast amounts of mass from planets/moons/asteroids. Would be like trying to build the USA in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean!— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 23, 2019
Musk's SpaceX that harbors similar intentions believes terra-forming - deliberately changing the atmosphere, surface, ecology, and temperature of a planet or another celestial body to mimic Earth-like conditions is a more appropriate approach. NASA has ruled out this approach as well, Business Insider reported.
At the forum, Bezos' remarked that terraforming would be very "dramatic" and "challenging". Even if one were to succeed, we would have doubled up the Earth and gone up from 10 billion to 20 billion people. His "space colonies" were a better option than trying to restart life on another planet.
We do not know how many people can Bezos' space colonies hold and how he plans to build them in the first place.
For now, everybody's eyes are set on going back to the Moon that is running behind its schedule.