Escape to the Seafloor

“It was probably in 7th or 8th grade; I didn’t quite catch the teacher’s question to all of us, but it was probably about what would happen if the fishery went on as before. I only regained consciousness from my daydreams when I was called upon to answer the question. I hesitated and said, that at some point there might be no more fish, the sea would be almost completely fished out. The class burst out laughing and the teacher, clearly amused, reassured me, that could take a while.

Times change. Today there are many enthusiasts who defend the cost of space travel by saying that we should move to other planets because one day the earth may no longer be habitable. And many people get their laughter stuck in their throats.

The climate conference COP26 has just ended. It had previously been described by many as the last exit that we must use in order not to end up in a climate catastrophe. In the days after the conference, disappointment spread that the agreements reached were not binding enough, but only vague intentions. So missed the last exit?

On May 28, 2017, a spring temperature of 53.7 ºC (128,66 ºF) was measured in Turbat, Pakistan. Temperatures of over 50 ºC (122 ºF) are no longer uncommon in some countries. One of the omega locations (heat dome) generated almost 50 ºC (122 ºF) in 2021 …in Canada and Siberia! My personal limit is around 48 ºC (118,4 ºF), anything above that is unbearable, unlivable, not for us, not for animals, not for plants. An area with over 50 ºC (122 ºF) is no longer habitable without technical aid. And so that’s about to happen in an ever-increasing number of regions around the world.

So when we think about underwater stations, we should be clear about one thing: one day we may have no choice but to live on the seafloor. This may not necessarily be a solution for several billion people, but it is questionable whether our planet can accommodate that many people in the future anyway. Perhaps these settlements will consist of large domes whose wafer-thin membranes separate the air-filled interior from the underwater world, with a few hundred individuals per settlement, perhaps we will even adapt physiologically to the marine environment, improve our oxygen balance through training, change our resistance to pressure… .

I believe that the number of people who can still laugh about it is decreasing rapidly these days. I wonder if we will still see fish in our new home.”

Martin Henke, Founder of CalamarPark

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