There have been calls for action to clean up waste in the world’s oceans, and now researchers are warning of the urgent need to do the same in space. Efforts are more similar than they may seem, time reports. “As a marine biologist, I never imagined writing a space paper,” said Heather Koldewy, senior marine technical advisor at the Zoological Society of London. But through this collaborative research [we] identified many similarities with the challenges of addressing environmental issues in the ocean.” The team of researchers, who published an open letter about the problem this month in Sciencesincluding experts on ocean plastic pollution.
Researchers have put an astronomical number for man-made objects floating in space: 100 trillion. In addition to debris fragments, this total includes live and decommissioned satellites; Until the advent of Sputnik in 1957, time Indicates that the count was zero. It took centuries for the oceans to become so turbulent and only decades for space to turn into a floating garbage dump. Right now, the space needs to be cleaned up. “Satellites are vital to the health of our people, our economies, our security, and the Earth itself,” said a British expert. Space.com. “However, the use of space to benefit people and the planet is at risk.”
Cleaning up space sounds like a huge undertaking, but scientists are putting their best efforts into efforts that are making progress in repairing the oceans. The first thing we need, they say, is a legally binding global treaty. Last year, 170 countries signed a treaty to combat dumping of plastics in the oceans. The scientists wrote that the agreement should hold government and commercial space launch services responsible for reducing the amount of space debris they cause and begin to clean up what is out there now. This must happen quickly, says their letter, “to avoid repeating the mistakes that have left the high seas – and everyone who depends on them – vulnerable.” (Read more junk space stories.)
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