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Environmental damage seen from shuttle

  1. Aug 8, 2005 #1
    HOUSTON, Texas (Reuters) -- Commander Eileen Collins said astronauts on shuttle Discovery had seen widespread environmental destruction on Earth and warned on Thursday that greater care was needed to protect natural resources.

    Her comments came as NASA pondered whether to send astronauts out on an extra space walk to repair additional heat-protection damage on the first shuttle mission since the 2003 Columbia disaster.

    Discovery is linked with the international space station and orbiting 220 miles above the Earth.

    "Sometimes you can see how there is erosion, and you can see how there is deforestation. It's very widespread in some parts of the world," Collins said in a conversation from space with Japanese officials in Tokyo, including Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi.

    "We would like to see, from the astronauts' point of view, people take good care of the Earth and replace the resources that have been used," said Collins, who was standing with Japanese astronaut Soichi Noguchi in front of a Japanese flag and holding a colorful fan.

    Collins, flying her fourth shuttle mission, said the view from space made clear that Earth's atmosphere must be protected, too.

    "The atmosphere almost looks like an eggshell on an egg, it's so very thin," she said. "We know that we don't have much air, we need to protect what we have."

    While Collins and Noguchi chatted, NASA officials were deciding whether a torn insulation blanket protecting part of the shuttle surface could rip off and strike a damaging blow to Discovery when it re-enters the atmosphere.

    They said it could require another space walk to fix, which would take place on Saturday if needed.

    A decision was expected on Thursday afternoon.

    Noguchi and astronaut Steve Robinson already have done three space walks, including a landmark walk on Wednesday to remove loose cloth strips protruding from Discovery's belly.

    NASA feared the strips could cause dangerous heat damage when the shuttle lands on Monday.

    Last edited: Aug 8, 2005
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 8, 2005 #2
    Same thing we've been telling the world for the last 100 years... Think they'll start listening now? :rolleyes:
  4. Aug 8, 2005 #3

    Here is a response from Free Republic and there is more where that came from.


    I honestly thought someone posted an Onion article. Aren't astronauts smart? I thought you had to be educated? No one educated could make such a ludacris statement based on naked eye visual observation. Well I used to be a fan of space, but now since they are sending up nuttly leg wing weirdo's I think I will stop donating and most likely donate to any organization who is anti-NASA. I want space exploration, not another "zany made up piece of "science" that they can use to justify increasing capitalism crushing taxes and property siezure"
  5. Aug 8, 2005 #4
    Those are some sad sick people posting.
  6. Aug 8, 2005 #5
    I'll agree to that, did you see their signatures? What a bunch of dumbasses.

    Having said that, I don't really see how they could see enviromental damage from space either. I mean, if that's the case why havn't satellites seen the same stuff and it's only coming out now?
  7. Aug 8, 2005 #6


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    Wait a second, is freerepublic based in Fresno, CA???? I didn't know our city was even mentioned on the internet outside of us being called a pot of mud or a dirty farm city.

    And I didn't know you can actually donate to NASA...

    and what the hell kinda post is "Typical NASA". What in the world has NASA ever done, said, or thought of that can be considered "typical". Ohh pff, nasa tryen to open up a wormhole through a blackhole using subatomic accelerations through the earth's atmosphere. Typical NASA.

    and haha, I had no idea that a majority of the earth's natural resources were visible hundreds of miles above the earth. This is pretty hilarious of course. Soon the liberals will jump on the uninformed bandwagon and think this is some proof that *insert conservative politician* is at fault for all the wolrds problem from the last 200 years or whatever.
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2005
  8. Aug 8, 2005 #7
    :rofl: :rofl: That was my favorite part.
  9. Aug 8, 2005 #8


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    And whats this "Keyword" thing

    Keywords: BLAHBLAHBLAH
  10. Aug 8, 2005 #9
    Check out this guy:

  11. Aug 8, 2005 #10
    They didn't say anything about a majority of the earth's natural resources. They only mentioned that they could see evidence of erosion and deforestation (and considering how wide spread the deforestation is in the world's rain forests, it is probably quite a prominant thing to see from space if you're looking for it).

    The fact that you would draw a connection between this statement and any sort of politics speaks volumes.

    Must one be a liberal to admit what they see before their very eyes?
  12. Aug 8, 2005 #11


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    Well when people say something needs to be protected, they normally mean a majority if not all things.

    This is just weird though. You'd expect her to say that we need to stop cutting down so many trees... but no, she expands it to every (or a majority of) resource on earth. It doesn't make sense to expand it to a majority if your going to qualify your statement with "We can see the forest is rather screwed up". No ones disputing that we do need to protect the Earth... but this is a rather random statement to say the least when you consider where/who she is and what she used to qualify the statement.
  13. Aug 8, 2005 #12
  14. Aug 8, 2005 #13
    I didn't see where they said that in the article.

    I saw Collins refer to deforestation, erosion, and the atmosphere. I saw her quoted as saying that people should replace the resources that have been used.

    I didn't see her say anything about the "majority" of Earth's reources.

    She said nothing about water, oil, biodiversity, arable land, coal, etc etc.

    Can you point me to where she said anything about the "majority" of earth's resources?

    Thanks Pengwuino!
  15. Aug 8, 2005 #14


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    This is a marketing ploy.

    "We need to tell people about the ecology.""
    "Boooring. No one reads about ecology."
    "People will read anything about the shuttle these days. What if we say it's about the shuttle, but then talk about ecology?"
    "What do the two have to do with each other though?"
    "Astronauts are smart, right? If an astronaut say's it, it MUST be true!"
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2005
  16. Aug 8, 2005 #15


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    With a good camera, you can see quite a bit from the Shuttle - it's only about 185 miles up.

    Rondonia Brazil, 1985

    Rondonia, Brazil, 1992

    You can browse an entire library of photographs from the shuttle at NASA's Earth from Space

    Of course, that's just typical NASA, though.

    Edit: Oh, one more picture. The region where Bin Laden has been hiding out the last couple of years? Hindu Kush
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2005
  17. Aug 8, 2005 #16
    Why did I just get a picture in my head of Steven Wright smiling up into the sky for a satellite photo?
  18. Aug 8, 2005 #17
    Thanks for the links Bob G

    There is a lot of terrestrial information that can be detected from space, including gas ,oil, and mineral deposits. (not that using those commodities would protect the atmosphere)

    What troubles me is that so many people don't seem to realize just how thin the atmosphere is. They think that if we can fly way up high in an airplane all of that atmosphere must be indestructible.

    As most of you realize the atmosphere is thin, very thin considering the size of the planet it surrounds and the number of life forms it supports. That is what the astrounauts were referring to.

    If the earth was the size of the average desk, 95% of the atmosphere would be much much thinner than a piece of paper laying on it.
  19. Aug 8, 2005 #18
    This neatly sums up my view on the matter...

    "With the shuttle seemingly falling apart around her, Collins might spend a little time worrying about how she's going to get her crew safely back to terra firma, even if it is badly polluted. Home, sweet home — be it ever so humble." -- R. J. Smith

    Rev Prez
  20. Aug 8, 2005 #19
    So you show us a couple hundred square miles of land that's still mostly green?

    Rev Prez
  21. Aug 8, 2005 #20
    Didn't take much biology coursework in school, eh?
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