Tracking Near Earth Objects

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History of Resolution

During the committee discussions related to the Space Defense Initiative draft proposal several nations expressed strong objections to the proposal on the basis that a UN operated orbital defense platform could be used against terrestrial based targets. Other nations felt that there was a greater need related to tracking interstellar threats to the Earth. Mikitivity proposed several amendments to the Space Defense Initiative, but SCOS OJ decided to turn down many of the Mikitivity amendments.

Following the defeat of the Space Defense Initiative resolution, Mikitivity made use of the UN floor debate, and brought their amendments to the UN floor as a new international security draft proposal. Unlike its predecessor, the new Tracking Near Earth Objects proposal, did not focus on achieving security through traditional military projects, but took a more passive approach to the topic. The new proposal specifically called for increases in UN member’s space science programs and called upon all nations (UN members and non-UN members alike) to work together to share information related to tracking Near Earth Objects (NEOs). Though it was suggested that the Tracking Near Earth Objects proposal make use of the UNSC, no formal mandate for tracking NEOs was placed upon the UNSC.

The proposal was well received by UN member nations, and through an aggressive telegramming campaign the proposal received over 302 UN Delegate endorsements. At the time this was the highest number of endorsements any proposal had achieved before reaching the UN floor, but part of this record setting endorsement count can be attributed to the fact that the proposal did not immediately move to the UN floor as a resolution once it had reached quorum.

Unfortunately the resolution reached the UN floor at a time when UN General Assembly facility in Stephistan was closed, thus there was no official UN debate of this resolution. The final vote on this resolution however, was conducted through the normal proxy voting system that has been used in all UN resolutions, and regional debates on the resolution continued as normal.

Text of the Resolution

Tracking Near Earth Objects
A resolution to improve world security by boosting police and military budgets.

Category: International Security Strength: Mild Proposed By: Mikitivity

The General Assembly,

AWARE that existing international, national, and non-governmental research in the space sciences are continuously identifying Near Earth Objects (NEOs) including many asteroids and comets which have the potential to one day collide with the Earth,

OBSERVING that some of these space sciences programs are not specifically charged with identification and characterization of the hazards posed by NEOs,

RECOGNIZING that the risk of a NEO impact is shared by all nations on Earth, and thus is of international concern,

TAKING NOTE of the "Report of the Task Force on potentially hazardous Near Earth Objects",

NOTHING WITH APPROVAL the Planetary Defense Conference, held February 23-26, 2004,

CONCERNED that the funding of current space sciences projects and conferences is fairly limited,

BEARING IN MIND that adequate warning time is a requirement for any space or terrestrial based response, ranging from mass evacuation to impact avoidance,

NOTING WITH CONCERN that few formal management plans for dealing with potential impacts exist,

APPROVING of the use of hazard assessment scales, such as the Torino Impact Scale, as a means of weighing the risk of impact with the consequences of an impact,

  1. ENCOURAGES all nations, United Nations members and non-members, to share any information on the trajectories of any Near Earth Objects (NEOs);
  2. FURTHER ENCOURAGES United Nations members to seek agreements with non-member states to share any information related to NEOs;
  3. EXPRESSES ITS HOPE that nations will continue to identify and characterize the hazard associated with potential NEO impacts;
  4. SOLEMNLY AFFIRMS the continuation of pre-existing international, national, and non-governmental research in the space sciences (which are considered to be included in military budgets for the purposes of NationStates); and
  5. RECOMMENDS that international, national, and non-governmental space science research groups continue to research and develop possible contingency plans should an impact be likely.

Votes For: 12,351
Votes Against: 3,273
Implemented: Mon Jul 5 2004

Gameplay Impacts

Since the passage of this resolution, the game moderators have since ruled that no proposal or resolution can make any reference to any real world document. Future proposals that include real world references would be ruled a UN rules violation, and the proposing nation would be issued a warning and the proposal deleted.

This resolution would not violate the current rules if the references to the "Report of the Task Force on potentially hazardous Near Earth Objects" and the "Planetary Defense Conference" were removed.

This resolution also departed from many normal NS UN resolutions by asking both UN members and non-members alike to share information and work together in order to track and plan for potential threats due to NEOs. Though current UN rules limit UN resolutions from impacting non-members, since this resolution only encouraged nations to share information, it did not violate the current NS UN rules.

Observatories tracking NEOs

The following is a list of observatories or space programs that freely share tracking information on objects (also known as near earth objects) whos orbit threatens NationStates:

Additional Materials