Daily: WHY MARS MATTERS with The Economist’s science correspondent Alok Jha

The Perseverance Rover is bringing us stunningly detailed images of Mars, but do we really need to go there? Are we anywhere nearer proof of life on other worlds? And is Elon Musk’s dream of a million-person Mars base by the end of the century feasible – or desirable? Alok Jha, The Economist’s Science Correspondent and host of The Jab podcast talks space-sceptic Ros Taylor through the pros and cons of Martian exploration, and ponders whether interstellar objects are proof of extraterrestrial tech. 

  • “If you’re interested in life on earth, you should be interested in life in Mars.” 
  • “We’ve never sent an astronaut to Mars, let alone a million people.”
  • “Before COVID, we didn’t think you could develop a vaccine in twelve months. It shows what you can do with willpower and money.” 
  • “We’ve never had people sitting in a tin can to Mars for six months before. Would they just destroy one another?”
  • “If there are one million planets in the universe, that’s a lot of opportunities for life to start.” 

Presented by Ros Taylor. Produced by Andrew Harrison. Assistant producers Jelena Sofronijevic and Jacob Archbold. Music by Kenny Dickinson. Audio production by Alex Rees. THE BUNKER is a Podmasters Production


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