Senate Passes Bipartisan Legislation Led by Senator Lummis

The Orbital Sustainability Act (ORBITS) passed in the U.S. Senate Thursday. The legislation was introduced by U.S. Senators Cynthia Lummis (R-WY), John Hickenlooper (D-CO), Maria Cantwell (D-WA), and Roger Wicker (R-MS). The bipartisan ORBITS Act would create a first-of-its-kind demonstration program to reduce the amount of space junk in orbit. Space junk, or orbital debris, poses a threat to satellites that people in Wyoming rely on for basic communication.

Senator Lummis said space junk is not only dangerous to humans exploring space, but also a major risk to satellites that people in Wyoming and around the country rely on for basic communication and the legislation is an important first step in removing debris from our orbit. 

There are approximately 8,000 metric tons of debris currently in orbit, including at least 900,000 individual pieces of debris that are potentially lethal to satellites. Lummis added that these satellites are necessary for things we use every day in Wyoming, from communication to transportation, safety and weather monitoring. Because of the magnitude of the current debris, simply preventing more space junk in the future is not enough.

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.