It seems just a short while I was talking about “Outside In” predicting space junk problems and here’s more news – they had to evacuate the International Space Station due to a 5-inch piece of junk coming too close. Sure, it’s a small item and the orbital area above earth is many times larger than the entire earth’s surface, but there are millions of pieces of junk and it’s getting worse, fast.
“Outside In” has not been embraced by the “space tourism”, “private space economy” and “colonize space” efforts for actually good reasons. A major section of the film deals with, if we explore and colonize space as we have earth, we are on an express train to litter, junk, destroy, wage war and generally spread the chaos of human history right over our heads and out into a solar system we barely understand.
But, in an apparent paradox, I’m advocating a huge increase in space exploration. But the key question is why? Why explore space? Which leads to how. We have to learn history or we are doomed, cliche or not, to repeat it, now with much worse consequences.
We have to find a new way to explore, discover and journey. What were are doing is simply not going to work. We may well destroy our future and even ourselves if we don’t change. This space junk issue is the early precursor of how wrong things can go. If a 5-inch piece of space junk can threaten humans lives and billions of dollars, just imagine what a malfunctioning nuclear weapon could do, out of control, above all our heads.