We are all astronauts

On the last page of the October 2010 issue of Canadian Geographic, Canadian astronaut Robert Thirsk shares some insights from his 187 days spent as a resident of the International Space Station(ISS).

Thirsk muses eloquently about the mind boggling views of Patagonia from space, the damage to Earth’s ecosystems that are visible from up there, and gives an astronaut’s perspective on the life support systems of our planet – which are nearly as precarious as those of the ISS.

I cannot imagine the feeling of vulnerability one might experience floating around in a Space Station surrounded by a lifeless infinity. But, Thirsk points out that living on the ISS, isn’t much different than living on Earth:

Living in space is precarious, whether we fly as six astronauts aboard the International Space Station or as seven billion astronauts aboard Spaceship Earth. In both cases, our ultimate goal is to develop an advanced life-support system that is reliable, repairable and 100 percent renewable.  For us to succeed on Spaceship Earth, each one of us will have to think – and act- like an astronaut.

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