The moon was a spaceship all along, and it's inhabitants have finally woken up. They say that in order to continue on their travels, they need to take our oceans to create a bubble around their ship (don't ask me why, it makes no sense from my perspective). They say we shouldn't really worry about it, as we still have plenty of water vapour in the atmosphere - more than enough to survive on - but I just don't believe them, and I don't think many others do either.

I've been put in charge of coming up with a damage assessment, but I have no idea where to begin!

There was one final offer they made, before retreating back into their lunar home... they said they also really need gold, and are willing to trade some of our ocean water back to us - 1000 cubic miles of water per metric ton of gold we give them. Perhaps we can pay them off with enough to keep things going, if the situation is too dire, but I have no idea.

Help me, please, I can't afford to lose my job over this...

As people don't seem to understand what I'm asking, I'll clarify:

Is there enough water in the atmosphere for humanity to survive on, if the oceans were stolen?

If not, would we be able to purchase enough with our gold reserves, to survive?


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    $\begingroup$ Using ice as a shield seems reasonable, send them off the harvest asteroids though, it's more practical than lifting tonnes of water out of a gravity well. $\endgroup$ – Separatrix Jun 8 '17 at 13:32
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    $\begingroup$ I'd just nuke the moon $\endgroup$ – Fl.pf. Jun 8 '17 at 13:54
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    $\begingroup$ @Separatrix They don't just want any old water, they want our oceans specifically. I think they have uses for the life contained within it, as they'll be taking them too. $\endgroup$ – Callum Bradbury Jun 8 '17 at 13:56
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    $\begingroup$ @CallumBradbury So this is just one question: How much water does the planet need to survive? Then state it like this. People will be researching how much gold there is in the world and waste their time. Oh and btw, if you take all the life from the ocean - everything that needs oxygen dies. Keep that in mind $\endgroup$ – Raditz_35 Jun 8 '17 at 14:05
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    $\begingroup$ @CallumBradbury That's what I've been saying - you could easily do this. Provide your numbers. Offer us your research so far. This sounds a lot like "do my work for me". Those numbers can vary btw depending on what you want. This is why it is so important to provide those numbers yourself $\endgroup$ – Raditz_35 Jun 8 '17 at 14:15

So the moon has a surface of around 38,000,000 km². That would mean to surround the moon with a bubble of lets say 10 m of water you would need 380,000,000,000,000 m³ water. The earth has an ocean surface of 361,800,000,000,000 m² which would mean that the sea level of the earth would lower by 1 m, we would notice, but it's not that big a deal.

PS: It could be I messed up some zeros, but it's around that.

  • $\begingroup$ Where do you get your 10m thickness for the water bubble from $\endgroup$ – dot_Sp0T Jun 8 '17 at 14:04
  • $\begingroup$ @dot_Sp0T He didn't specify a thickness, so I chose one $\endgroup$ – Fl.pf. Jun 8 '17 at 14:05
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    $\begingroup$ I should possibly have clarified - they're taking it all, for a huge bubble. 10m isn't going to cut it for their schemes. $\endgroup$ – Callum Bradbury Jun 8 '17 at 14:06
  • $\begingroup$ You need to express both areas in the same units to avoid the mistake you've made. It's about 1 meter. And we would notice that, although it wouldn't kill us. $\endgroup$ – WhatRoughBeast Jun 8 '17 at 14:06
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    $\begingroup$ You formatted k and m as variables in MathJax. There’s no need for math formatting here anyway. $\endgroup$ – JDługosz Jun 8 '17 at 14:16

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