Junk That’s Out Of This World

The Bridge: Space debris is officially a problem – in the years following the space race, there’s a veritable trash dump orbiting our planet. So what does this mean for our young ones? After all, they’ll be the ones who have to clean it up…

Trash Stash

What’s worse than a mountain of trash? A mountain of trash – whizzing around in our upper orbit. According to some estimates, there are over 14,000 pieces of significantly-sized trash up there – made up of broken rockets and satellites. It’s possible there are a million more that are more bolt-and-screw-sized, which spells trouble for anyone venturing out into the solar system. Not to mention there are tree-sized pieces of space trash crashing to earth every now and then.

So what’s a generation to do?

Fortunately, there’s already been some movement in the world of extra-global policy. The White House is rolling out a proposal that’s aimed at preempting the cleanup efforts. We’re a long way from total orbit cleanup, but at least we seem to be headed in the right direction.

One Man’s Trash…

It shouldn’t surprise you to hear that some enterprising folks have their eyes on this trash, hoping to turn it into treasure. Startups focused on photographing the floating field of junk are already underway, which will lead to easier clean-up efforts as time goes on.

As we contend with the problem of cleaning up trash in our oceans, so too will we turn our efforts to the sky. Does your kid want to be an astronaut? Maybe even a space janitor? Good news – Space Force is hiring.

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