Members of the Space Frontier Foundation are headed to Washington on March 6-8, 2011 to urge Congress to “Keep the Promise” when it comes to supporting the new US commercial space industry. The group is inviting all supporters and friends of America’s space efforts to show up and speak up in defense of innovative budget saving initiatives like NASA’s Commercial Crew program, and warn Congress about the damage it will do if it does not act to support this critical new approach to space.
Last year, NASA announced a number of bold new programs to stimulate development of new spacecraft and capabilities by buying commercial space transportation and services. This is inspiring long established companies like Boeing to pursue new markets and encouraging new entrepreneurs like SpaceX and Masten Space Systems. Unfortunately, because of language in last year’s appropriations, money appropriated to NASA under the current continuing resolution must continue to fund wasteful and now canceled programs like Ares, while programs like Commercial Crew are starving for funds.
“Congress has made a lot of noise about these programs,” said the Foundation’s Rick Tumlinson. “But they need to step up and actually fund them, rather than pouring good money after bad and propping up already-canceled dead ends like Ares 1. The Continuing Resolution under which NASA is operating is no resolution – leaving NASA’s engineers, our risk taking space companies, and the American people in limbo, while other nations move ahead in space.”
Therefore, the Space Frontier Foundation and its allies are coming to Capitol Hill to let Congress know that it must fund these programs for 2011 and it must not delay.
“The Space Frontier Foundation is determined to get Congress to break the logjam and get America moving into space,” said “Keep the Promise” project leader Aaron Oesterle. “And we aren’t alone – other organizations like the Space Exploration Alliance and Prospace will be in DC around the same time – so if you can’t make it to one event, go to another, since we are all working towards the same goal – opening the frontier!”
For more information, check out promise.spacefrontier.org, or email Aaron Oesterle at firstname.lastname@example.org.