Colonization in contemporary terms is to settle and establish rule over a particular planet or region of a planet. There may or may not be native people living on the planet in question.
Private and Public Colonization
Colonization has come a long way since the early gunpowder era. Humans and aliens have claimed hundreds of planets, taking their resources and creating more living space for their populations. There are two types of colonization: Private and public. Private colonization is when a private company, individual, or organization claims and settles a planet. Most nations have laws regarding this, usually in the form of a permit or special permission from the government. Public colonization is when a government directly claims a planet. They may turn it into a military base, use it for agriculture, mining, or just let people settle there.
Early Human Colonization 2038 - 2089
The earliest days of human colonization were solely within the Solar System
. The Russian Federation kicked off the colonization trend by settling on Mars
. It featured a simple yet sturdy dome that held plenty of oxygen and other required living components. Mercury was turned into a penal colony with a similar system, as prisons on Earth were getting much too large to fund and control.
In 2089, the first lightspeed drive
was invented. This completely changed the colonization scene, with the United Earth Coalition
being the first to use it to colonize planets outside of the Solar System soon after its production.
Lightspeed Era 2089 - 2115
The Lightspeed Era marked a huge growth in human power and numbers. Planets known for being rich in precious metals and resources were colonized first, with the Mother Earth Mining Company
being founded by the UEC in 2095. The human population began to rapidly increase and the overall wealth of humanity (especially Earth) became more and more opulent. Private colonization companies formed and claimed planets of their own, usually with a tax by the UEC.
The first Radical Atmospheric Device
was invented in 2115, marking another new era in colonization. Using the element shukranium, it allowed for limited shaping of a planet's atmosphere, later being able to create entirely new artificial atmospheres.
Current Era 2115 - 2182
The colonization industry grew exponentially. There was a long period of great wealth across all of humanity, and much of this wealth translated to alien nations that traded with humans. Hundreds of planets became UEC soil within decades.
In 2179, the colonization industry bubble finally popped. In a year's time, humanity was impacted on a much greater scale than even the Great Depression in the 1930's. Even alien nations saw a notable drop in economic growth, as the trade with the UEC was far too lucrative to ignore.
Colonization is more limited than it used to be, the UEC and private companies are both too busy dealing with the great financial loss that the Galactic Depression