The Planet


Kariba is one of the old human colony worlds, located 6.300 parsecs from Earth. It has a marginally breathable atmosphere, and is a small planet dense with heavy metal deposits, resulting in a somewhat lighter gravity than Earth. Kariba's sun is the M1 V star Beta Hydri.

Kariba is tidally locked and so has perpetual day and night hemispheres. Most surface water is locked into the nightside icecap, but trickles of meltwater run from the terminator in rivers that eventually peter out due to evaporation on the dayside. The dayside is warm to hot. Kariba is really a marginal location for a human settlement, but its location as the nearest supply of heavy and industrial metals to the planet Arawne makes it an important outpost.


Hardy photosynthesising microbes make up Kariba's quota of native life. Several Earth species of plants and animals have been imported, some gentically modified to the planet's harsh conditions.


Kariba holds a population of around 160 million humans and a few thousand aliens (mostly Chatka). Most of the population is involved with Kariba's primary industry - mining. There are few other reasons to live on Kariba.


Kariba exists as a viable settlement mainly because of the vast, easily extracted reserves of metals on the planet. Mining and export of refined ore comprises over 90% of the world's domestic product. The remainder is manufactured goods reliant on these metals.

Most of Kariba's exports go to Arawne. In return, Kariba receives much of its food and other organics from its nearby neighbour. Remaining wealth is used to import luxury items from all over human-space. Although naturally a poor place to live, Kariba's mineral wealth makes its living conditions generally very good.


Kariba is somewhat of an oddity amongst the old colony worlds in that it is still administered as a colony, by Arawne. The two worlds formally comprise the interstellar nation of Arawne, with Kariba having proportional representation in Arawne's government. Due to the population difference, however, this amounts to virtually no influence at all.

Over their 500 or so years of history there have been several attempts by Kariba to gain independence from Arawne, but its lack of self-sufficiency has always been a fatal impediment to these plans. Native Karibans grow up with an anti-Arawne chip on their shoulder, but are not often spurred to action because the quality of life on Kariba is genuinely as good, if not better, than on Arawne.

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