Poor city planning I Search for life on Mars

Posted by: The Conversation Global

Date: Monday, 03 August 2020


The urbanisation process in most developing countries has been marked by the growth of dense informal settlements in, and alongside, cities. The spread of COVID-19 has shown how hazardous living conditions are in these settlements. But, argue Astrid R.N. Haas and Victoria Delbridge, density per se isn’t the problem, as Singapore has shown through the pandemic. The problem lies in the fact that governments haven’t done any planning, or made investments. The first crucial step should be the removal of regulations that restrict the supply of large-scale affordable housing.

In other news, NASA has launched its Perseverance rover to Mars. Two members of the mission’s scientific team explain why this is likely the best chance in our lifetimes to find signs of life on the Red Planet.

Caroline Southey


African urban dwellers pay 55% more in rentals than their counterparts in other cities in the world.

Africa’s high density urban settlements: cut the red tape and slash the cost of housing

Astrid R.N. Haas, International Growth Centre; Victoria Delbridge, International Growth Centre

The demon is not density but rather that African countries have not planned and made the investments necessary to manage the downsides of the type of density found in informal settlements.

In a clean room at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., engineers observed the first driving test for the Mars rover, Perseverance. Perseverance will search for signs of past microbial life, characterize Mars’ climate and geology, and collect samples for a future return to Earth. NASA/JPL-Caltech

NASA’s big move to search for life on Mars – and to bring rocks home

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This summer, NASA's Mars Perseverance rover is taking the next giant leap in our search for signs of life beyond Earth.

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They will find minimal traces of the virus itself, but lots of PPE.

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This insect's unique reproductive biology could lead to new ways to control the species in the environment – and prevent the deadly sleeping sickness it spreads to people.

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Pui-Ying Iroh Tam, University of Malawi

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