Apollo landers, Neil Armstrong's bootprint and other human artifacts on Moon officially protected by new US law - Yahoo News
Jan 12, 2021 1 min, 25 secs
But how humans treat those bootprints and the historic lunar landing sites upon which they are found will speak volumes about who we humans are and who we seek to become.

It requires companies that are working with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration on lunar missions to agree to be bound by otherwise unenforceable guidelines intended to protect American landing sites on the Moon.

However, it is also the first law enacted by any nation that recognizes the existence of human heritage in outer space.

That’s important because it reaffirms our human commitment to protecting our history – as we do on Earth with sites like the Historic Sanctuary of Machu Picchu, which is protected through instruments like the World Heritage Convention – while also acknowledging that the human species is expanding into space.

To do so, we must recognize landing sites on the Moon and other celestial bodies as the universal human achievements they are, built on the research and dreams of scientists and engineers spanning centuries on this globe.

It is only a matter of decades, perhaps just years, before we see a continuous human presence on the Moon.

While it would be nice to think that a human community on the Moon would be a collaborative, multinational utopia – albeit located in what Buzz Aldrin famously described as a “magnificent desolation” – the fact is people are once again racing one another to reach our lunar neighbor.

The lunar landing sites – from Luna 2, the first human made object to impact the Moon, to each of the crewed Apollo missions, to Chang-e 4, which deployed the first rover on the far side of the Moon – in particular bear witness to humanity’s greatest technological achievement thus far.

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