South Asia and Beyond

Lunar Land Up For Grabs: Scenario For The Future

NEW DELHI: The day may not be far off when the world will be witness to, a land grab of unprecedented proportions: a land grab centred on the Moon!

In this conversation on The Gist, Chaitanya Giri, space science and technology consultant, points to recent US legislation, notably the rather innocuously named One Small Step To Protect Human Heritage In Space Act (passed in December last year by Congress), which calls for any agency given a license by the US government for space activities to abide by NASA rules on preserving human heritage sites on the Moon.

Thus the landing sites of the various Apollo missions are “sacred ground” and cannot be disturbed in any way The boot print left by the first man on the Moon Neil Armstrong is similarly holy ground. It cannot be encroached upon or interfered with in any way.

Giri argues that this can be extended to cover areas where the US or private US firms have commercial interests. An MIT report had also mentioned that areas of the Moon with perpetual sunlight could be territory coveted for generating solar power. Craters believed to contain water ice would be in demand for any future human settlement on the Moon.

Tune in for more in this fascinating conversation with Chaitanya Giri.

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