Solar Power Satellites are a solution to both global energy needs and to the greenhouse gas problem. The primary obstacle is the enormous lift costs. A cheaper source of construction materials than Earth must be found.
Editor’s note: Published more than 15 years ago, this essay is even more true and urgent today, and guides the philosophy and actions of Space Studies Institute. This very slightly UPdated version now includes selected illustrations from SSI’s free-to-copy sample slides, the Solar Power Satellite art set.
Trilogy January/February 1992
One of the great phenomena of our times is the environmental movement. Like any popular, large-scale movement, it has its irresponsible fringes, but it is impressive not only for its power, but for the number of its thoughtful, reasoning supporters. And none too soon, because within the past half-century the growing world population’s drive to industrialize has reached the point where human activity is clearly damaging the environment, in some cases irreversibly. Such damage is not unique to our own times; the deforestation of ancient Greece and much of Europe and Britain in the past few hundred years are examples. Now the damage has become general and worldwide.
Continue reading The World's Energy Future [Still] Belongs in Space by Dr. Gerard K. O'Neill