National park on moon proposed
July 9th, 2013
07:31 PM ET
9 months ago

National park on moon proposed

(CNN) – Yorktown. Independence Hall. The moon?

The site of man's first lunar landing could join battlefields, presidential birthplaces and other major American historical sites on a roster of protected places if two Democrats have their way.

U.S. Reps. Donna Edwards of Maryland and Eddie Bernice Johnson of Texas have proposed legislation that would designate artifacts at the site of American moon landings as comprising a National Historical Park, citing potential commercial traffic on the moon that could damage the areas.

Apollo 11 astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin were the first to walk on the Lunar surface in July 1969.

Subsequent moon flights landed in other areas and equipment from all of the space missions, which ended in 1973, remain on the moon's surface. These include the spidery bottom halves of lunar landers, flags and even a moon car.

"As commercial enterprises and foreign nations acquire the ability to land on the moon it is necessary to protect the Apollo landing sites for posterity; and establishing the Historical Park under this Act will expand and enhance the protection and preservation of the Apollo lunar landing sites and provide for greater recognition and public understanding of this singular achievement in American history," the legislation reads.

The bill specifies that only the artifacts left behind by NASA missions would be included in the park – not the lunar surface itself, which doesn't belong to the United States or any nation.

It also opens the door for corporate donations and contributions from foreign governments to maintain the proposed park.

Both Edwards and Johnson are members of the House Committee on Science and Technology.


Filed under: Democrats • NASA
soundoff (121 Responses)
  1. Babaloo

    During the primaries, Newt Gingrich spoke of a colony on the moon. How is this different? Frankly I believe in Gingrich, a brilliant man who sometimes acts eccentric. But that doesn't lessen the fact that the wrong man got into the White House.

    July 9, 2013 11:23 pm at 11:23 pm |
  2. Gordon Ruth

    Actually, three lunar rovers were left on the moon from Apollos 15, 16 and 17.

    July 9, 2013 11:26 pm at 11:26 pm |
  3. MCanadian

    The moon does not belong to the USA, it is not the US's property to make a park out of.

    July 9, 2013 11:38 pm at 11:38 pm |
  4. MagTog

    LOL. People still believe we landed on the moon!? Hilarious.

    July 10, 2013 12:00 am at 12:00 am |
  5. jib

    I would like to be the Earth-based caretaker, regardless of what it pays.

    July 10, 2013 12:26 am at 12:26 am |
  6. Chris

    that would be the toughest park stamp to get

    July 10, 2013 12:32 am at 12:32 am |
  7. Arya Bagherpour

    Hubris.

    July 10, 2013 12:40 am at 12:40 am |
  8. Mike

    Maybe we should clean up our stuff.

    July 10, 2013 12:42 am at 12:42 am |
  9. B

    Only the 1% can afford to go there.

    July 10, 2013 12:48 am at 12:48 am |
  10. LastSaneMan

    They could send Newt Gingrich there to be the Park Ranger.

    July 10, 2013 12:54 am at 12:54 am |
  11. just me

    Expect the repubs to respond with a bill allowing firearms to be carried there. It is a dangerous neighborhood, after all.

    July 10, 2013 12:54 am at 12:54 am |
  12. Kazuki

    someone at NASA watches Futurama WAY too much.

    July 10, 2013 01:02 am at 1:02 am |
  13. Roscoe

    It's a land grab 50 years off. And we pay our politicians to hatch these schemes.

    July 10, 2013 01:03 am at 1:03 am |
  14. billdaul

    I am so glad taxpayer money is more interested in a fracken park on the moon rather than health care! We certainly have our priorities straight.

    July 10, 2013 01:08 am at 1:08 am |
  15. TrustKnow1

    The Global Economy is about to implode! Who's going to be able to get there? If you could, you'd have to be on the lookout for big green space bears trying to break into your food!

    July 10, 2013 01:21 am at 1:21 am |
  16. Drew

    While I'd like to say this is a colossal waste of taxpayer time and money, it's kind-of-sort-of a good idea. If they can pass it quickly, spending no more than 1-2 days on drafting the bill, I'm fine with the idea. Of course, doesn't the U.N. have to approve something like this? I mean, can China declare a site on the moon as a National Park or something? Come to think of it, maybe this will be a big waste of time!

    July 10, 2013 01:22 am at 1:22 am |
  17. Anonymous

    "It also opens the door for corporate donations and contributions from foreign governments to maintain the proposed park."

    Shouldve seen that one coming

    July 10, 2013 01:38 am at 1:38 am |
  18. joshers

    Kim Jong Un: I left missiles on the moon...but its okay because they are part of my Runar Nationar Park.

    July 10, 2013 01:42 am at 1:42 am |
  19. Ron Heinz

    This is forethought rarely seen and never appreciated. Thumbs up from this Canadian.

    July 10, 2013 01:51 am at 1:51 am |
  20. Crockett

    So, the moon buggy is a national park, but the soil on which it's parked is not?

    July 10, 2013 02:10 am at 2:10 am |
  21. hmmm

    I can think of 1 million things more important right now.

    July 10, 2013 02:21 am at 2:21 am |
  22. TheTao

    You have to be joking me. Is the senate stoned, or just ignorant. We don't care as a citizens about the landing, I sure don't, I don't think majority of Generation Y does. What we care about is fixing your broken government. And my it is so broken. Why doesn't the Senate start focusing on getting America back on track instead of these off topic, low concern ideas they have. Fix the economy, fix your stupid budget, hell fix a big problem and impeach the president, while your at it take a pay cut, both Republicans and Democrats are to blame here, and as a Gen Y I am placing blame on both parties, and both bodies of government. Fix NSA, Fix IRS, Fix Budget, and for god sakes do it faster.

    July 10, 2013 02:25 am at 2:25 am |
  23. regenesis0

    I'm in favor of this. (Or at least some legal protection for the area.)
    This should probably go through the U.N. though

    July 10, 2013 02:43 am at 2:43 am |
  24. rogue351

    Since people like Ken Ivory want to dismantle all of the public lands in the western united states. Returning them to the states that can then sell them off to big oil or builders like himself. Our national parks here on earth will be ruined by mansions mining and oil drilling and fracking. So why not start on the moon. BTW- All you drill baby drill people who are worried about what kind of America your children will have. Well they will be out of oil and gas and have no place to go to appreciate natural land scapes not marred with oil rigs. They will only be able to hike and camp in special areas and will be arrested for trespassing on private property of the rich. That is exactly what the GOP / Tea Party has in mind to leave your children for the future. Why because it is not about national debt it is about greed. And who are the most greedy of them all ? The rich because enough is NEVER enough.

    July 10, 2013 03:08 am at 3:08 am |
  25. JohnTenn

    Have they nothing better to do with their time?
    How about looking for a way to create the building blocks of our lives – JOBS!!!!
    Oh yeah, they have a cushy one already.

    July 10, 2013 04:12 am at 4:12 am |
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