Press Release

Potomac Institute Calls for a Coordinated National Space Strategy on the 50th Anniversary of Apollo 11

By SpaceRef Editor
July 17, 2019
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The Potomac Institute for Policy Studies (PIPS) calls for a Coordinated National Space Strategy. Since the launch of Sputnik in 1957, the impact of space-based infrastructure has increased year after year. Today, more than ever before, the benefits brought from orbit pervade every level of society: GPS enables over $1 billion of economic activity per day, NOAA satellites collect weather data to warn of upcoming storms and track long term climate data, communications satellites provide worldwide, irreplaceable coverage for both civilian and military operations, and much more. These industries touch on nearly every department, agency, and office of the federal government and impact each American every day.

Despite the crucial role that space plays in every facet of government and commercial operations, the federal government does not have a coordinated National Space Policy. The last policy, issued in 2011 by the Obama Administration, is outdated, and does not sufficiently address all key policy areas. The current administration has taken steps towards a national strategy by outlining several key features that should be included in a national policy, issuing four space policy directives, and reconstituting the National Space Council. Individual agencies have their own stated policies.  While these entities have policy strategies for space, there remains no overarching national strategy to tie them together.

Mike Swetnam, Chairman of the Board and CEO of the Potomac Institute for Policy Studies, stated: “The development of a comprehensive, cohesive national strategy is critical and should include key stakeholders from every sector of the national space enterprise.” A new National Space Strategy will mitigate the problem of duplicative program efforts, create accountability by designating specific space issues to certain offices, agencies, or departments, and create a coordinated vision throughout the enterprise. Furthermore, development of national strategy can be used as an opportunity to identify key policy issues that remain unresolved and provide clarifying language on each, including which governmental parties are responsible for the various issues and how they are to interface with other parties of interest.

The Potomac Institute for Policy Studies is an independent, 501(c)(3), not-for-profit public policy research institute. The Institute identifies and shepherds discussion on key science and technology issues facing society. From these discussions, PIPS develops meaningful policy options and ensures their implementation at the intersection of business and government.

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SpaceRef staff editor.