Maryland Lawmaker Proposes National Park On The Moon | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

WAMU 88.5 : News

Filed Under:

Maryland Lawmaker Proposes National Park On The Moon

Play associated audio
The park would include all areas of the moon where astronauts touched the lunar surface during the Apollo missions.
NASA
The park would include all areas of the moon where astronauts touched the lunar surface during the Apollo missions.

At first glance, proposed legislation from Reps. Donna Edwards (D-Md.) and Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-Texas) sounds normal enough — the pair is calling for a new national historic park to commemorate one of the most significant happenings in American history. What makes the proposal slightly out of this world is that the park would be placed on the surface of the moon.

As originally reported by The Hill, the bill introduced by Edwards, the ranking Democrat on the Space Subcommittee of the House Science, Space and Technology Committee, includes a measure that will establish a national park at the site of the historic Apollo mission landings between 1969 and 1972.

The reasoning is explained in the text of H.R. 2617: "As commercial enterprises and foreign nationals acquire the ability to land on the Moon, it is necessary to protect the Apollo lunar landing sites for posterity."

"It sounds a little silly on the face of it — the idea of creating a national park on the moon. After all, the United States doesn't really own territory on the moon," says Alex Bolton, senior staff writer for The Hill. "What Edwards is talking about is making the artifacts that were left behind — the lunar modules — part of a national park."

Under the legislation, joint authority for the proposed park would fall between the Department of the Interior and NASA.

"There are other members of Congress who have proposed similar things," Bolton says. "Bill Posey (R-Fla.) introduced the Reasserting the American Leadership in Space Act, which would direct NASA come up with a plan to return to the moon and develop a sustained human presence by 2022. And Newt Gingrich during the 2012 presidential election proposed a lunar colony on the moon. While he was laughed at, it didn't prove fatal to his campaign."

Donations and cooperative agreements would be accepted as well, in order to "provide visitor services and administrative facilities within reasonable proximity to the Historic Park." It is unclear at present what constitutes "reasonable proximity" to the moon.

NPR

Best Seat In The House Of Worship: The Temple Hollywood Built

Built in the late 1920s by movie moguls, the Wilshire Boulevard Temple is a Los Angeles landmark — and also a statement the LA Jewish community made to itself, and to the city.
NPR

Red Robin's 'Monster' Burger Wins Xtreme Eating Awards

The Center for Science in the Public Interest says, at more than 3,500 calories, it's the "single unhealthiest" meal among 200 chain restaurants.
WAMU 88.5

Jonnie Williams On Stand Again Today In McDonnell Corruption Trial

Former Star Scientific CEO Jonnie Williams will take the stand again today in the trial of former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, and his testimony could be key in the case.

NPR

Can Pinterest Compete With Google's Search?

Pinterest has created a database of things that matter to humans. And with a programming team that's largely been hired away from Google, the company has begun offering what it calls "guided search."

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.