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A recent article in The Pantagraph dealt with Elon Musk's plan to spend $10 billion on Space X missions to Mars by 2020. Musk also is an owner of Tesla Co. which manufactures electric cars. Both space travel and charging electric cars are the subjects of this letter. 

The question is whether needs on Earth would benefit from any exploration in space. Consider the following: 

1. Climate change is related to man's use of fossil fuels and results in the rise of the world's oceans, droughts, and water shortage. Lakes and rivers are drying up and drinking water is scarce. 

2. Solar power can lessen climate change. It also can aid in producing water for human consumption by desalination of the world's oceans. It is plentiful, readily available, and non-polluting. The charging stations for electric cars could be powered by the sun, too, instead by fossil fuels, as in presently done and which contribute to climate change. 

3. Musk plans to colonize Mars would place humans in an unfavorable environment, benefit only a few, and consume his billions just to get there and transport provisions needed to live there. 

By concentrating on utilizing solar power, Musk's billions would redound to his credit, and his legacy would be both as a humanitarian and philanthropist. 

William Frinsko, Normal


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