Space exploration is the ultimate plan B. Here’s why.

Why did the dinosaurs go extinct? Because they didn't have a space program.

  • Space exploration is more than just the ultimate adventure, our study and investigation of space yields great scientific rewards, says astronaut Garrett Reisman.
  • Earth is wonderful, but it won't last forever, so it's important that we maintain a big picture view to ensure the survival of the human species.
  • Exploring space is our ticket to "the ultimate plan B," according to Reisman. If there were to occur a mass extinction event on Earth, the humans that inhabit another planet in our solar system will be the only hope of human survival.
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How Tasmanian devils are evolving to fight back against extinction

Devil facial tumor disease, or DFTD, has cut the Tasmanian devil population by 90 percent. Now, some devils have evolved to resist the virulent cancer.

GREG WOOD/AFP/Getty Images
  • Devil facial tumor disease, or DFTD, is a transmissible cancer that Tasmanian devils spread through bites.
  • The cancer is highly infectious and lethal, and the Tasmanian devil population has dropped by 90 percent since it was first discovered.
  • In the short time that we've known about the disease, however, the devils seem to be evolving new defenses that are helping some of them fight back and survive.
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