We read an article about some recent ventures into space (or at least the upper atmosphere). There have been many headlines about some of the world’s wealthiest individuals making these short excursions and plans to make similar trips available to customers seeking such a rare (if expensive) opportunity.
Sending a celebrity on one of these trips, William Shatner, the famous captain from the classic sci-fi program, Startrek, surely helped get a lot more publicity. Shatner himself marvelled at the experience and how seeing the earth from that perspective underscored our planet’s fragility and the importance of protecting it.
Another well-known figure, Prince William, has been outspoken against the investment in space tourism when there is so much to be done to protect our planet. The remarkable investment of effort in the 1960s leading to a successful moonshot does seem like a model of the kind of unified and concerted effort needed right now to solve issues related to climate change. Maybe the Earthshot Prize backed by Prince William will encourage and inspire helpful innovations.
It has been interesting to hear some student’s perspectives on this topic in class, and it will be interesting to see some of them here along with ideas from other readers. We welcome your replies.