27 February 2008

HR 4917 Proposed NEO Defense Bill

A proposed bill would further attempt to embroil NASA in a mission it does not want, while ignoring the DOD: http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/z?c110:H.R.4917:
directed from: http://gaiashield.com/NEOPrep/

Submitted by Rep Rohrabacher, and rumored to have been written or prompted by Rusty Schweikert. Sections of particular interest:

(1) Asteroid and comet collisions rank as one of the most costly natural disasters that can occur.
(2) According to the October 2007 report to Congress by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (in this Act referred to as `NASA'), 140-meter-in-diameter asteroid collision will generate the equivalent power of a 100 megaton TNT explosion.
(3) There are approximately 100,000 near-Earth objects 140 meters wide or larger.
(4) The time needed to eliminate or mitigate the threat of a collision of a potentially hazardous near-Earth object with Earth is measured in decades.
(5) Unlike earthquakes and hurricanes, asteroids and comets can provide adequate collision information, enabling the United States to include both asteroid- and comet-collision disaster recovery and disaster avoidance in its public-safety structure.
(6) Basic information is needed for technical and policy decisionmaking for the United States to create a comprehensive program in order to be ready to eliminate and mitigate the serious and credible threats to humankind posed by potentially hazardous near-Earth asteroids and comets.
(9) The public safety of the United States and the planet requires the competence and expertise found in NASA to prepare and to validate the potentially hazardous near-Earth object deflection situation and decisionmaking analysis, as well as to select systems and procedures, to prepare the United States for readiness to avoid or to mitigate collisions with potentially hazardous near-Earth objects.
(a) Establishment- The Administrator shall establish the Office of Potentially Hazardous Near-Earth Object Preparedness (in this Act referred to as `Office'). The purpose of the Office shall be to prepare the United States for readiness to avoid and to mitigate collisions with potentially hazardous near-Earth objects in collaboration with other Agencies through the identification of situation- and decision-analysis factors and selection of procedures and systems.

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