AIA: U.S. Risks Losing Space Lead, Obama Should Create Space Coordinating Body

AIA: Lift U.S. Space Coordination to Presidential Level
Defense News

The new U.S. administration should create a coordination and management body on space programs that would have direct access to the president, similar to the National Space Council that last operated under President George H.W. Bush, the Aerospace Industries Association said Jan. 12.

The trade association released a report Jan. 12 with recommendations for space programs and spending for the Obama administration. Among its recommendations were to keep funding levels stable for space programs, further improve the export control process and implement a U.S. Earth-observation architecture.

An organizing government body on space would help the federal government coordinate space policy among all government agencies, another of AIA’s recommendations, the association said.

U.S. Faces New Space Race
Wall Street Journal

Unlike the Cold War competition to put a man on the moon, the Obama administration faces a different kind of space race, with broader scientific, national-security and business implications.

A report released Monday by an industry group emphasizes those challenges, and warns that sweeping policy, budget and institutional changes are necessary to protect what it called America’s “perishable” lead in satellites, rockets and space exploration.

The study by the Aerospace Industries Association, which includes large firms such as Lockheed Martin Corp. and Northrop Grumman Corp., as well as numerous midsize contractors, is part of an effort to highlight how the U.S.’s priorities need to adapt to a changing reality in which more countries are pushing into space for political and industrial reasons.

AIA Report Recommends Space Policies for New Administration
AIA Press Release

A new report from the Aerospace Industries Association concludes that the nation can no longer afford to treat its national security, civil and commercial space capabilities separately.

The report, “The Role of Space in Addressing America’s National Priorities,” recommends the new administration develop a mechanism to look at our space capabilities as a single enterprise consistent with national goals and objectives.

Over the last several decades, innovations from space have increasingly become a part of our daily lives, AIA President and CEO Marion Blakey said.

“Space assets are critical to our environmental stewardship, human exploration and national security,” said Blakey. “Given our dependence on space assets and increasing international competition, it is critical that space issues be seamlessly integrated into national policy.”

The report was prepared by AIA’s Space Council to inform the new administration about the challenges facing the U.S. space sector. In addition to recommending the establishment of a national coordinating body to develop and execute a national space strategy, the report suggests the administration provide the necessary budgets to continue critical, multi-year space programs.

Additional recommendations include creating a more favorable business environment, reducing gaps in climate measurement and establishing a comprehensive space protection strategy, among others.

The report is being provided to the new administration and members of Congress and is a blueprint for policy, Blakey said.

It is available on AIA’s Web site at www.aia-aerospace.org/industry_information/reports_white_papers/.