Scientists say that more than 100 trillion microorganisms will be crawling on every astronaut that travels to Mars. All these microorganisms have evolved over thousands of years to help us here on earth from digesting our food to keeping bacteria from killing us. Bringing these microorganisms to Mars; it will be hard to predict how they will react in a Martian environment and how it will affect Mars. If there is microbes on Mars we may kill them all by bringing our microbes. So why don’t astronauts just decontaminate themselves? Because there is no way to do that. We spew out microorganisms all the time and that can’t be stopped.
This is such a concern that some space agencies have been thinking of ways to minimize contamination to other planets. The Committee on Space Research has developed protocols in 2008 that were made to eliminate contamination from Mars to the Earth and vice versa. These protocols are also being followed by private companies that plan to send men on Mars. Space X founder Elon Musk hopes to fly astronauts to Mars within 15 years and many others are trying this as well. With these protocols in place we can make sure we are environmentally friendly to our planet and others.