Sunday, March 25, 2012

Sol Bulletin #3

The following is excerpted from issue #3 of the Sol Bulletin, an ad hoc news sheet distributed electronically among survivors of the Battle of Earth in the chaotic period following the firing of the Crucible. Issue #3 was released five days after the Crucible fired.

Inter-species Summit Convenes on SSV Elbrus
With the fate of the Arcturus Flotilla still unclear, today the dreadnought SSV Elbrus hosted a summit with representatives from every fleet and every major Earth government. The summit's agenda was simple: with Earth devastated and the fleet unprepared for long-term operation without resupply, how will the sentients currently trapped in the Sol system survive?

While stressing that contacting settlements outside the Sol system remains an urgent necessity, several leaders expressed optimism after the first day of the summit. "We came to Sol in the spirit of unity," said Primarch Victus of the Turian Hierarchy. "I'm glad to say that spirit is still alive and well, and with care, we have all the resources we need until contact is restored with the rest of the galaxy."

Some measures have already been agreed upon. Enough Quarian lifeships survived the Battle of Earth to allow foodsharing with the Turian Hierarchy's ships. With rationing, this should provide dextro-amino sentients enough food to last for at least a year - although Admiral Zorah of the Quarians emphasized that securing another food source must still be a priority. "We lost too many lifeships to feed everyone forever. Our agricultural facilities will need to operate beyond a sustainable level to feed the Quarian and Turian fleets. Without another food source, we will be locked into a downward spiral as the lifeship ecologies fail."

The Quarians are making other contributions as well. Quarian engineers with a lifetime of experience keeping ships running without proper supply or drydock facilities (all of which were destroyed by the Reapers) will be dispatched through out the fleet to make sure even ships damaged in the Battle of Earth will still be able to contribute to the fleet's efforts. The Geth have also volunteered for widespread deployment; the strength and resilience of Geth platforms, combined with their technical acumen, makes them ideally suited for a number of jobs that would be dangerous or impossible for other sentients.

Other measures have been agreed to in principle but are not yet ready for implementation. A great deal of focus will be placed on speeding the recovery of Earth. "Earth stands ready to assist the fleets that came to our defense," said President Lisa Ford of the United North American States. "The fleet has technical expertise and supplies that we need, and there's a lot they can do to bootstrap our recovery, which will then allow us to return the favor." Ford admitted that a full recovery of Earth-based agriculture may take too long to provide for the entire fleet's short-term food needs, but emphasized that every effort must nonetheless be made, especially given the uncertain status of other food sources, such as colonies outside the Sol system.

All the summit attendees demurred to comment on setting up a provisional government for the Sol system for the duration of the emergency, an issue which has been extremely contentious to date. Earth-based (and some Alliance) officials claim that Sol remains sovereign human territory, while leaders of the alien fleets insist that, under the circumstances, power must be shared between all the sentients in Sol.

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