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What goes up... Space junk: how to clean up the Space Age's mess; > 4 million pounds of trash orbiting Earth

earth orbit is a junkyard

(quote)

The Trouble With Trash
It's been 53 years and over 4,500 launches since the dawn of the space age, and Earth's orbit is a junkyard. Our orbit is littered with spent rocket stages, lens caps, broken-up satellites, frozen urine, the odd glove, bits of foil, and the tool kit dropped by astronaut Heide Stefanyshyn-Piper during a spacewalk in 2008. You name it; the low Earth orbit has probably got it.

Millions of pieces of this space debris orbit the globe at break-neck speeds, and the spacecraft that pass through orbit are in jeopardy from even the smallest objects. But while the problem is evident, the solution remains elusive. Will Earth's orbit forever resemble a scene from WALL-E? Many scientists have now turned their attention to cleaning up the clutter.

attaching tail to satellites to collect them when they outlive their purpose

Every satellite that goes up to orbit is the pride and joy of some company, lab, or nation. But once it has outlived its purpose, it's nothing but junk.  read more »

Dig into fragile Earth crust for oil or grave? Lives in peril, soaked & choked by oil gushing non-stop: Tracker & Photos


How Much Oil Has Leaked Into the Gulf of Mexico? (PBS NewsHour)

BP oil spill: seabird covered in oil flails in the surf at East Grand Terre Island along the coast of Louisiana

The hole dug 3 to 4 miles into fragile Earth crust that no one can seal... The Gulf of Mexico oil spill continues to gush while many of the coastal animals are currently in their reproductive seasons.

Gulf of Mexico BP: dead turtle floats in pool of oil
(quote)
A dead turtle floats on a pool of oil from the Deepwater Horizon spill in Barataria Bay off the coast of Louisiana.

Gulf Oil Spill: gull covered in oil
A laughing gull coated in heavy oil wallows in the surf June 4, 2010 on East Grand Terre Island, Louisiana. Oil from the Deepwater Horizon incident is coming ashore in large volumes across southern Louisiana coastal areas.

brown pelicans covered in thick oil off Gulf of Mexico  read more »

Top 5 arms exporters: who feels secure? Weapons piling up, enough to blow up Earth many times over rather than defend it

Top L: US President Barack Obama and South Korea's President Lee Myung-bak; Bottom R: U.S. Air Force C-17A Globemaster III
The United States of America remains the largest exporter of conventional weapons in the world, according to the latest study by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI). The U.S account for 30% of global arms sales, or about $7 billion per year, for the period 2005-2009, SIPRI statement says. From 2005 to 2009, the U.S. sold one-third of its arm exports to South Korea (15%), Israel (13%) and the United Arab Emirates (11%). The top U.S. military equipments included JDAM guided bombs and RGM-84L Harpoon-2 anti-ship missiles, delivered to South Korea, in 2008.

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev holds a Kalashnikov gun
Russia remains the second largest supplier, with 23% of the global arms exports, or about $4.5 billion per year, the SIPRI data indicates. Russia’s main clients are China (40%) and India (20%), which belong to the top five of the largest conventional weapons importers from 2005 to 2009, SIPRI says. Russian exports of fighter planes included 82 Sukhoi fighters for India and 24 MI-17 helicopters for China.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel
Germany, whose exports doubled over the past five years, has become the world’s third-largest arms dealer, SIPRI reports. Germany now makes up 10% of the global volume. Most of Germany’s arms are sold to other European countries, such as Turkey (15%) and Greece (13%). German Leopard 2A4 tanks delivered to Turkey cost over 365 million Euros.  read more »

Choice & Consequence: solar, wind energy vs deepwater drilling..4.2 million oil spews into ocean /day..birds, turtles, fish dead

wind farm vs. offshore drilling: oil spill in Gulf of Mexico
Top: "Large Air Spill at Wind Farm. No threats reported. Some claim to enjoy the breeze.". Bottom: in Gulf of Mexico, Deepwater Horizon oil rig explodes, burns, sinks (2 days later on Earth Day).

off shore drilling: Gulf of Mexico oil spill
Gulf Oil Spill: ~210,000 gallons of oil leaking per day.

European countries have hundreds of wind turbines

oil rig exploded in the Gulf of Mexico off the Louisiana coast, the oil slick will destroy this generation of the bird that nests along the Gulf coast beaches  read more »

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