Swedes to colonize Mars
"I think this will be the greatest thing to happen in my generation. I would regret it, if I didn't take the chance," says Moova Spennare, a 22-year old woman from Kumla.
Along with over one thousand other candidates, among them ten Swedes, she is now waiting for the most important message in her life. More than 200,000 people have applied to move to the planet Mars. It is now up to the folks of the Dutch project 'Mars One' to pick 40 of them.

Their mission? To colonize the red planet, which is the fourth from the Sun, and the second smallest planet in our Solar System. The first four settlers are to be sent off in 2024. With no return ticket. Katarina Stark is another of the Swedish candidates. At 47, she is the oldest one of the Swedes. If she is chosen, she will be close to 60 when she leaves planet Earth. Stark believes her age is an advantage. ”Since there is no return, I believe there’s more of a sacrifice for younger people to leave Earth,” she says.

Once the first emigrants have settled on the planet, the plan is to send new settlers every other year to keep filling up the colony. The ones of us who remain where we are will be able to follow the Mars travellers via TV-broadcasts. But this doesn’t scare 22-year old Harald Frendin from Uppsala, who has also signed up.
”I don’t mind,” Frendin says. ”TV broadcasting is a good way to collect money for the project. Life over there can be difficult, you have to survive and be able to make food grow.” Mars One will cost billions of dollars, and will be paid through private donations. Ten years remain until the project is about to take off – literally – but the candidates will soon be selected, as training will begin already next year. Should you get picked and later change your mind about going, you are free to do so until countdown commences. A whole new life is waiting for the settlers on Mars: There will be food to grow and new information to gather. But whoever wants to start a family, should stay put on Earth. Babies and births are dangerous in an environment where the possibilities of medical care are few. Warned to go are also those who are prone to feeling homesick. ”Even if you can have radio contact with Earth, it may take as long as half an hour to get an answer,” says 28-year old candidate Carl Nettelblad from Uppsala. ”You will never be able to speak directly to another person again than those in the crew. That’s difficult to imagine.”

Feel like applying? ..see www.mars-one.com