Late this September, scientists from NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter discovered compelling evidence that there is indeed water flowing on the surface of Mars, pointing to the very real possibility that there may also be life on the Martian surface.
While the Los Angeles Times reports that this water source is most likely too salty to support living organisms as we understand them — but it still strengthens the likelihood and the potential for some form of life on the Red planet.
“It suggests that it would be possible for there to be life today on Mars,” said John Grunsfeld, associate administrator of NASA’s Science Mission Directorate.
But while scientists and civilians alike are reveling in this exciting and very breaking information, not everyone is pleased. Rather, some of us here on Earth are wondering why the same money, time, and attention isn’t being funneled into finding alternative water sources on our planet, where the need is growing increasingly pressing.
In a recent installment of “Readers React”, a Los Angeles Times opinion piece, Bob Hoffman of Long Beach, California, expressed similar feelings of dissatisfaction with current water salvaging efforts here on Earth. While he agreed that the potential of both water and life on Mars is indeed exciting, he couldn’t quite understand why the same efforts weren’t being funneled into the exploration of earth and towards mitigating the massively devastating drought that California is currently experiencing.
He writes, “Gaining knowledge about possible oceans on Mars while ignoring exploration of nearly three-quarters of our planet that is covered by our own troubled, polluted, and stressed oceans seems somewhat illogical.”
He continues, “I would like to see some of that technology, expertise, and money spent on exploring ways to save our one and only home, Earth.”
While many would like more money and effort put into our planet’s water conservation and reclamation effort, there are indeed many ways people can practice water conservation on their own. For example, the Environmental Protection Agency reports that if all households in the United States invested in energy efficient water fixtures and appliances, America would save more than three trillion gallons of water per year.