[meteorite-list] Asteroids Fighters, Unite: United Nations Votes to Create Global Force

From: Galactic Stone & Ironworks <meteoritemike_at_meteoritecentral.com>
Date: Mon, 28 Oct 2013 23:20:00 -0400
Message-ID: <CAKBPJW-v48po_bbiXj5TjOmk3vkGBgD784ycaRTSQze4-x0Ehg_at_mail.gmail.com>

Great idea - about time. This cannot hurt in any way and Chelyabinsk
is a wake-up call.


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On 10/28/13, Ron Baalke <baalke at zagami.jpl.nasa.gov> wrote:
> http://www.latimes.com/science/sciencenow/la-sci-sn-un-asteroid-defense-plan-20131028,0,5301471.story
> Asteroid fighters, unite: UN votes to create global force
> By Deborah Netburn
> Los Angeles Times
> October 28, 2013
> Even the United Nations is taking the threat of asteroids hitting our
> planet seriously.
> Last week, the U.N. General Assembly approved measures to coordinate
> detection
> and response to asteroid strikes that could level cities and possibly
> destroy our civilization.
> Specifically, the agency voted to create an International Asteroid Warning
> Network made up of scientists, observatories and space agencies around
> the planet to share information about newly discovered asteroids and how
> likely they are to impact Earth. The group will also work with disaster
> relief organizations to help them determine the best response to an asteroid
> impact like the one that rattled the Russian city of Chelyabinsk in
> February.
> The U.N. will also set up a space mission planning advisory group to look
> into how humans might deflect an asteroid heading our way -- the best
> options, the costs and the technologies needed. The results of that study
> will be shared with space agencies throughout the world.
> The General Assembly also agreed that the  existing U.N. Committee on
> the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space would monitor threats from asteroids
> and help plan and authorize a deflection campaign if necessary.
> These measures were based in part on recommendations from the Association
> of Space Explorers, a  professional society of astronauts and cosmonauts.
> The group, made up entirely of people who have flown in the space, submitted
> a report to the U.N. in 2009 titled "Asteroid Threats: A Call for Global
> Response." The report outlined steps for how the U.N. could help prevent
> a dangerous asteroid strike.
> Speaking at a news conference on Friday, Apollo 9 Astronaut Rusty
> Schweickart
> said the group believes  decisions on how to respond to an asteroid threat
> must be handled by an international body.
> As of now, the only way to deflect a dangerous asteroid is to detect it
> 10 to 15 years in advance, and then alter its orbit slightly so it would
> miss Earth, Schweickart said.
> "The question is, which way do you move it?" he said. "And if something
> goes wrong in the middle of the deflection, you have now caused havoc
> in some other nation that was not at risk. Therefore, this decision of
> what to do and how to do it, what systems to use, and all the rest of
> it has to be coordinated internationally."
> Schweickart described the measures recently adopted by the U.N. as a
> skeleton
> of a decision-making process that will help guide the international
> community
> on how to handle a threat if one arises.
> "I say a skeleton because it has no meat or muscle on it yet, " he said.
> "That is the challenge as we go forward."
> The members of the space explorers group have already outlined the next
> steps that they would like to see implemented in a global asteroid defense
> plan.
> They want to see national governments include asteroid impacts in their
> disaster response plans and budgets, and they want policy makers to direct
> national space agencies to launch an international asteroid deflection
> demonstration in the next 10 years.
> They also want to find the nearly 1 million near-Earth objects that could
> potentially strike our planet.
> "One-hundred years ago, if the Earth is hit by an asteroid ... that is
> bad luck," said Ed Lu, an member of the group who spent seven months on
> the International Space Station and is now chief executive of the B612
> Foundation. "If 20 years from now we get hit again, that is not bad luck,
> that is stupidity. We can do better as a race."
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Received on Mon 28 Oct 2013 11:20:00 PM PDT

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