Humans are destroying the terraforming industry [Short Sci-Fi Story]

Oolik was happy, he was President of Biosphere Galactic, and that made him as powerful as, and the equal of, any head of state, from any galactic empire.

But those f*****g humans had ruined everything

Biosphere Galactic was the largest corporation in the history of the galaxy, it had existed for 46,000 years, had an income equal to 1000 entire planets, the largest spaceborne navy of any organization or entity in history, the 3rd biggest armed navy, and had literally shaped life on innumerable worlds across the entire milky way.

Terraforming was the most lucrative and profitable business in the galaxy, and what 99.9% of people didn’t know was, it was that lucrative because it was much easier than people realized

Each species has its own definition of what makes a planet suitable for settlement.

The Jayatur said you needed to be able to form a balanced and sustainable ecosystem with the existing lifeforms and wouldn’t declare a planet as confirmed for settlement until at least 50 years after first colonization

The Noll had their 1625 checks of habitability. Things such as gravity, radiation levels, day-to-night percentage, planetary spin speed, maximum annual temperature variations, etc.

The Auute had a more pragmatic view: have a colony of sufficient size to avoid inbreeding, and the ability to support itself off natural resources if their technology failed and they found themselves isolated.

And so on and so on. The general idea being that each species had a massive list of requirements before a planet was capable of settlement.

This meant that the vast majority of life-sustaining planets weren’t suitable for settlement when discovered, and “terraforming” mostly consisted of minor adjustments to planets that already have working ecosystems, or repairing those that had suffered major ecological events.

Sure, they could bring life to barren rocks, but it was too much effort, and many worlds out there were already almost habitable. It only happened if the planet allowed you to see some spectacular natural phenomena that the travel industry could milk to build resorts and bring in rich travelers.

Maybe what they did wasn’t true terraforming. But the name still carried enough mystique that they could charge massive margins, and they did by far the best work of anyone so the orders were lined up for the next 6 years with a waiting list of projects after that.

Yes, terraforming was the best business in the galaxy to have a monopoly on.

The keyword there being was. Now Oolik was no longer happy and was no longer the equal of galactic heads of state. Now he was the leader of the flaming pile of catastrophic shit that was the biggest corporate collapse that would ever happen in the Milky Way.

And it was all the stupid, hairless, mentally deficient, slobbering apes’ fault.

No one was going to pay the time and money for terraforming when you can sell the planet to a species whose only conditions for settlement are:

Can I stand naked outside for 30 minutes on at least one point on the planet without dying?

And when that species was so hard to kill, he was sure their existence was punishment for some forgotten to time, horrific genocide he inflicted on innocent pacifists in a previous life. Oolik was left in a position where he needed about 200 civilized planets to get hit by asteroids or he was f***ed.

Republished with permission from the author, Reddit user u/Admirable-Marsupial3. Image created with the Stable Diffusion.