After almost a decade alone on Mars, scientists at the International Mars Science Foundation’s (IMSF) fully developed Olympus Town settlement prepare for the arrival of a group of highly skilled astronauts working for Lukrum Industries, a for-profit corporation specializing in natural resource extraction. In present day on Earth aboard the world’s northernmost oil platform in the Arctic, extreme conditions make for a Mars-like work environment.
IMSF and Lukrum, now sharing a common water and power source, have established a tenuous coexistence that threatens to dissolve when Kurt and his crew make unexpected headway in their mission to mine the planet, and Hana works to maintain diplomacy between the two camps—until tragedy strikes. Meanwhile, on Earth, Dr. Leslie Richardson asserts her authority as the new IMSF Secretary General. In present day, Greenpeace activists take to the seas to protest Arctic oil drilling in the Barents Sea, and the effectiveness of such tactics are examined.
A solar flare knocks out communications on Mars and forces Olympus Town to locate exobiologist Marta Kamen before tragedy strikes. Meanwhile, the colony is bracing for its first-ever pregnancy on the Red Planet; tragedy strikes Hana (Jihae); and Amelie’s plans to return to Earth are thwarted. In present day, a scientist and his team on Earth brave harsh and dangerous conditions in the pursuit of data that will help predict the effects of glacial melt on global sea levels.
Marta convalesces as a mysterious illness sweeps through Olympus Town and Lukrum Colony. When IMSF realizes one of its own has died as a result, it races to determine the cause, origin and mode of transmission before time runs out—and more lives are claimed. Back in present day, Vladimir Chuprov, a Greenpeace activist, sheds light on an indigenous health crisis being kept quiet by the Russian state to benefit their Arctic oil endeavors.
Lukrum strikes a deal with Russia for exclusive mining rights. Uneasiness spreads over Olympus Town as LT. Commander Mike Glenn undermines Hana and endangers the members of Lukrum Colony as a result. And, a new baby – the first-generation Martian – arrives two months early! In the Arctic Circle in present day, nations attempt to work together to reign in corporate interests, protect fragile ecosystems and preserve indigenous lifestyles while fossil-fuel companies prioritize their own profit over the public good.
Lukrum pushes its corporate interest too far and unintentionally jeopardizes the safety of both colonies. IMSF springs into action to stabilize the situation, but for some, it will be too late. In the current climate on Earth, human activity has destabilized the natural world. NASA’s Operation Icebridge studies Arctic sea ice in an attempt to bring awareness to global warming and the dramatically changing state of our planet, the only home we have… for now!