Weekend Special: Will space tourism’s phenomenal rise benefit world?

The world is changing at a rapid pace. What was special earlier is common nowadays.  

Space travel has also seen it lately. In the past, only scientific explorers used to venture out in space to find several answers but now, it has become a way to spend leisure time.   

Due to the advancement and commercialisation, space tourism has become a reality.   

Several big conglomerates have entered this arena, which is highly lucrative.   

Also Read: SpaceX sends detergent to space to help astronauts wash clothes

Not just this, the competition in the industry has already heat up. Nowadays, Elon Musk’s SpaceX has been running missions for sending tourists to space. It has also been working on several other missions in coordination with NASA.   

Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic and Jeff Bezos’s Blue Origin have also completed their maiden flights. Many billionaires, such as Japanese tycoon Yusaku Maezawa, Richard Branson and others, have already visited space.   

Apart from billionaires, several others have also reached space or the International Space Station.  

A US-based firm Space Adventures, which is headed by Tom Shelley, have sent around eight tourists to the ISS.  

Also Read | Watch: Finally, revolutionary James Webb Space Telescope scales sky on Christmas

The industry is also facing significant criticism due to its carbon footprint. This comes at a time when the world is looking to fight climate change in a do or die situation.   

Some companies are using cleaner fuel for space travel but some are not.   

Virgin Galactic has said that it looks to hold 400 flights a year in future. It shows that the popularity of space tourism will surely increase manifold.   

This may lead to huge amount of greenhouse gas emissions. So, it is important to find a fine balance between advancement in the form of space tourism and solution of climate change issues. 

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