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The U.S. space organization does not have the monetary resources to track all of the flying objects that could pose a threat to Earth

Even though the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is able to detect and monitor most asteroids that are close enough in case of potential impact with Earth, the U.S. space organization lacks the proper funding to get it done within the deadline that Congress imposed in 2005.  Specifically, Congress wants NASA to detect 90% of the near-Earth objects (NEO) range from 140 meters in diameter up to more than a kilometer and a half.

The NASA report speculates there are around 20,000 asteroids and other flying objects that are currently in orbit somewhat close to the Earth.  But financial constraints will not allow NASA to detect, monitor, catalog and characterize all of the NEOs like Congress requested two years ago -- it is more likely that NASA will have to focus only on the flying objects that pose a real threat to Earth.

To accomplish the plan enacted by Congress by 2020 would force NASA to use ground-based telescopes that are used by other research and space agencies; the likely creation of a dedicated observatory designed specifically for tracking NEOs; and NASA to launch a space craft that would monitor a safety cushion around the Earth.  The report estimates that all of these projects would cost more than $1 billion, which is a high price that NASA cannot afford.

The Pan-STARRS telescope in Hawaii is one tool that is being used by three UK universities to help locate possible Earth-threatening asteroids.  The powerful telescope is able to detect objects from 300m in diameter, which is large enough to have a strong impact on the Earth.


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RE: Sad
By Chriz on 3/14/2007 10:08:46 AM , Rating: 2
Even if you and these scientists you talk about ended up being right and global warming is in fact not being caused by man....would you really want risk it? I sure wouldn't. I would rather be safe than sorry.

Even if global warming was not caused by man, we still need to change our ways, because even though if in that case our factories and automobiles didn't cause climate change, they still do affect the air we breathe. Just look at how many people have asthma nowadays (I'm one of them).

Regarding NASA and asteroids, I really do think NASA is underfunded. Look at how much money we spend on IRAQ, and we don't even spend close to that on NASA. Space is the future.


RE: Sad
By masher2 (blog) on 3/14/07, Rating: -1
RE: Sad
By mezman on 3/14/2007 2:37:08 PM , Rating: 2
Sorry, no sale. After the fall of the Soviet Union, you and your globalist buddies need a new bastion from which to espouse your neo-marxist ideologies. Anything to suppress the prosperity of the west, right? Why not do so under the guise of environmentalism? Then you can call it a moral issue and remove any debate. No one wants to be amoral by supporting a global catastrophe do they? you've come up with the perfect mechanism for suppressing dissension. And it's working perfectly, unfortunately.

Hell, man. Even the original co-founder of Greenpeace has decried the third-world suppressing, fear mongering religion of anthropogenic global warming as a sham.

Asking the question "Do you want to risk it?" is another good way to suppress debate. What reasonable person would want to risk it? Well, there are many good reasons to risk it. Not the least of which is the disproportionate economic impact of taking the steps prescribed by the global warming alarmists. It also keeps the third world down.

There's a new term for people like you. Watermelons. Green on the outside and red on the inside. There's a good reason that China isn't being pressured into joining Kyoto the way that America is. You wouldn't want to stunt the growth of the largest remaining communist country, would you?


RE: Sad
By hubajube on 3/14/2007 6:05:41 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
There's a new term for people like you. Watermelons. Green on the outside and red on the inside. There's a good reason that China isn't being pressured into joining Kyoto the way that America is. You wouldn't want to stunt the growth of the largest remaining communist country, would you?
Outstanding!!!! Excellent argument. What I find interesting is that China's economy at the present isn't doing well? Maybe temporary but I find it weird that a country that's solidly in the growth period would experience any down trends.


RE: Sad
By Chriz on 3/14/2007 6:07:58 PM , Rating: 2
So you are saying that by me suggesting that we clear the air of dirty/harmful emissions and gases, I want to suppress the prosperity of the west?? I don't think so.

If worrying about our country having lots more money than other countries is more important to you than a healthy place to live, that's fine, but I don't agree. You definitely have some delusions of grandeur.


RE: Sad
By hubajube on 3/14/2007 6:27:03 PM , Rating: 2
It's not delusional to put issues in their proper perspective and then deal with that issue instead of instilling unnecessary fear and anxiety and going overboard fixing the issue. What should be done is unbiased research to get to the bottom of our problems. Then once the REAL root of the problem is discovered, perform research again to find a fix for it. We WASTE more time pointing fingers and getting all worked up over ANY problems that arise instead of working to resolve these problems.


RE: Sad
By masher2 (blog) on 3/14/2007 8:44:32 PM , Rating: 4
> "you are saying that by me suggesting that we clear the air of dirty/harmful emissions and gases..."

CO2 isn't a "dirty/harmful emission". Its the most important natural plant fertilizer, of paramount importance to life itself. Life evolved at a point in the past, when CO2 levels were 10 to 20 times higher than they are today.

> ...I want to suppress the prosperity of the west??"

I don't speak for you, but for the leaders of the environmental movement. And they make it most definitely clear that they consider economic growth and prosperity part of the problem, not the cure.

Quote: "We've already had too much economic growth in the US. Economic growth in rich countries like ours is the disease, not the cure". Paul Ehrlich, noted environmentalist.

Quote: "We must make this an insecure and uninhabitable place for capitalists and their projects. This is the best contribution we can make towards protecting the earth...". From Earth First.

Quote: "To feed a starving child is to exacerbate the world population problem". Lamont Cole.

Quote: "The only real good technology is no technology at all. Technology is taxation without representation, imposed by our elitist species (man) upon the rest of the natural world".

Quote: "If you ask me, it'd be a little short of disastrous for us to discover a source of clean, cheap, abundant energy because of what we would do with it. We ought to be looking for energy sources that are adequate for our needs, but that won't give us the excesses of concentrated energy with which we could do mischief to the earth or to each other...". Amory Lovins, in The Mother Earth.


RE: Sad
By fluxstar256 on 3/14/2007 9:33:02 PM , Rating: 1
I'm sorry, you're wrong.

CO2 may be good for plants and primodial goop, but CO2 IS harmful humans.

I suggest you stick a plastic bag on your head and breathe your own CO2 for a while to test it out.


RE: Sad
By masher2 (blog) on 3/15/2007 8:11:47 AM , Rating: 2
> "I'm sorry, you're wrong. CO2 may be good for plants and primodial goop, but CO2 IS harmful humans...

Do people not think before they post? CO2 is deadly to humans at a concentration of 100 thousand ppm. The current atmospheric CO2 level is 380 ppm, an infinestimal fraction of this. If we burnt every bit of oil, coal, and ever other carbon deposit on the planet, we still wouldn't reach the CO2 level during the Devonian, which was well over 3,000 ppm...a period in which plant and animal life both thrived, far more so than it does today.

Your own BREATH contains CO2 levels as high as 10,000 ppm, and a well-insulated and sealed house (which many people spend years of their life in) can easily have CO2 5-10 times the atmospheric level. Furthermore, a small amount of CO2 in the air is vital for humans and most mammals. Without it, the breathing reflex isn't properly triggered, and you're likely to die of apoxia.

Plant life depends utterly upon CO2 levels. It is airborne plant food...increasing it means faster, richer growth, and a more abundant biosphere.


RE: Sad
By rcc on 3/14/2007 3:40:18 PM , Rating: 2
Personally I like the theory that says the earth should currently be in a mini ice age, and global warming is off setting it. Fix the problem and it creates serious problems for the far northern and southern regions.

Yes, this is partially in jest. But there is scientific fact to support it.


"Let's face it, we're not changing the world. We're building a product that helps people buy more crap - and watch porn." -- Seagate CEO Bill Watkins

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