The Millennial Project: Colonizing the Galaxy in Eight Easy Steps
by Marshall Savage
is a book (published in 1992 and reprinted in 1994) that gives a series of concrete stages the author believes will lead to interstellar colonization. Many specific scientific and engineering details are presented, as are numerous issues involved in space colonization.
The book's thesis
Savage takes a Malthusian
view of the exponential growth
of human population
and life in general, and also recommends the exponential growth of blue-green algae
. He states that it is humanity's manifest destiny
to colonize every star in the galaxy. He draws heavily on the Fermi paradox
(briefly stated as, "If there is intelligent life in space, why haven't we found it yet?") to support his position that it is humanity's burden alone to ignite the universe with the "spark of Life."
In The Millennial Project
, he calls for the creation of an international foundation to realize these goals. Originally known as the First Millennial Foundation
(founded by Savage in 1987
), the organization changed its name to the Living Universe Foundation
The steps of the project
The "Eight Easy Steps" proposed by Savage are as follows:
- Foundation -- Constitute an organization convened to realize these destinies
- Aquarius -- Cities built in the tropical oceans as a first step to learning how to build colonies in space. They also would generate income to fund later steps.
- Bifrost -- First step in actually getting off the Earth.
- Asgard -- Build Space stations in low Earth orbit and throughout the Solar System.
- Avallon -- Build colonies on the Moon by doming over the craters and creating miniature ecologies.
- Elysium -- Start Terraforming Mars to "create a living planet to sustain us".
- Solaria -- Use the materials in the Solar System to rebuild it the way we want.
- Galactia -- Colonize beyond the Solar System, expand throughout the galaxy.
In the early stages of the Project, Savage recommends Spirulina algae as a primary foodstuff, supplemented by seafood mariculture from the cities of the Aquarius phase.
The book has drawn some criticism in that while it is replete with details concerning OTEC
construction and space colonization
, it touches very little on the subject of how governments and societies will need to change to enact the Project. Defenders maintain that one man writing one book cannot be expected to write out the entire course of human development over the next millennium, and that others more suited to the field of social psychology
will be needed for the Project's completion.