Science Czar: We Must Protect U.S. From Asteroids
If an asteroid were on a collision course with Earth, would we be ready to defend against its destructive impact or would we be helpless and defenseless?
NASA, America's space agency, is being charged with leading the way to protect not only the U.S. but the entire world in the event of such a horrifying scenario. And a top White House science adviser says we have to be prepared.
In separate 10-page letters to the House Committee on Science and Technology and the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation, John Holdren, director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, or OSTP, outlines plans for "(A) protecting the United States from a near-Earth object that is expected to collide with Earth; and (B) implementing a deflection campaign, in consultation with international bodies, should one be necessary."
While Holdren indicates that no large asteroid or comet presents an immediate hazard to our planet, the fact that devastating impacts have occurred on Earth in the distant past is enough to warrant safety precautions for the future.
"Indeed, a steady stream of these objects enters the Earth's atmosphere on a daily basis, consisting mostly of dust-sized particles and estimated to total some 50 to 150 tons each day," Holdren wrote.
As remote as it may seem that Earth could be the target of a giant rock from space, nevertheless, Holdren insists that "the possibility of a future collision involving a more hazardous object should not be ignored."
There is a 100% chance that CHINA is dominating the world's supply of rare earth minerals and they control that part of the technology market. Why, Mr. Science Czar, isn't the U.S. working to develop our own rare earth mineral resources?
There is a 90% chance that relatively cheap oil for fuel will run out within 50-years. All of the largest major producing oil fields in the world are in decline. Oil will still be available... but much more costly to get to. Why, Mr. Science Czar, isn't the U.S. working to develop nuclear FUSION using Helium-3 available in large quantities in moon dust, or improving technology for clean nuclear FISSION energy?
What about more drought resistant crops? How about developing better desalinization technology to provide fresh drinking water to coastal cities? How about developing hybrid solar panel / heat recovery panels to improve their energy efficiency?
Really, for a Science Czar... you're talking about a really remote threat. You can't even tell WHICH rock, what it's made of, how fast its traveling, when it might cross our path... basically, you know NOTHING of the threat. The only asteroid that is certain to cross Earth's path for impact isn't for another 700-years. Why not do something useful with your time instead. Besides, I thought NASA was too busy on Mus-l!m outreach programs anyway.
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