NASA Heading Back to the Moon

The news that NASA is heading back to the Moon to build a permanent outpost there excites Shelley Sekula Gibbs, the newly elected Congresswoman whose district includes the Johnson Space Center. Chad Pergram reports from Capitol Hill.

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Humans last visited the moon in the early 70s. and it's been half a century since science fiction writer Arthur C. Clarke depicted a moon-base as a galactic gateway and five years after Clarke envisioned people living at the colony in 2001: A Space Odyssey. Shelley Sekula Gibbs represents NASA and thousands of NASA workers in her district.

Space represents the great frontier. It's where science actually can expand and grow and it's where our children who are looking for careers in science can actually bloom and become the world's best scientists.

Sekula Gibbs says it's not just about exploration. It's about economics. and the Congresswoman dismisses those who argue such an endeavor is too costly.

The NASA budget is really only a small fraction, around 1% of the total budget so we're really not spending excessive amounts on it but we have to plan for our future and space and science is the future for our country and we have to invest in that today.

NASA is currently robbing dollars from the current space station and space shuttle programs to develop a new ship to carry astronauts back to the moon. For Houston Public Radio, I'm Chad Pergram on Capitol Hill.