National Space Society Endorses ISDA and CFR on Ground-Breaking Policy Work on Space-Based Solar Power

(Washington, DC September 13, 2010) — The National Space Society (NSS) endorses India’s Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses (IDSA) publication of “Skies No Limit: Space-Based Solar Power as the Next Major Step in the Indo-US Strategic Partnership.”

The 160 page paper was sponsored by the US-based Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), and represents 16 months of in-country research by a member of the National Space Society, Peter Garretson, to examine the possibilities of Indo-US cooperation in space and renewable energy.

The paper examines the relevance of Space-Based Solar Power, a highly scalable, revolutionary, renewable energy technology in the context of the Indo-US strategic partnership. After providing an overview of the concept and its significance to the compelling problems of sustainable growth, economic development, energy security and climate change, it evaluates the utility of the concept in the context of respective Indian and US political context and long-term energy-climate trajectories. The paper examines multiple models of potential cooperation, and ultimately concludes that a bilateral initiative to develop Space-Based Solar Power is highly consistent with the objectives of the Indo-US strategic partnership, and ultimately recommends an actionable three-tiered program to realize its potential.

Gary Barnhard, Executive Director of the National Space Society, said, “This is a serious effort to articulate an agenda for Indo-US strategic partnership in space cooperation, clean energy, and climate change. This is a truly ambitious proposal that could top the Indo-US ’123′ civil nuclear deal in scope and significance. It’s timing right before President Obama’s visit could not be better, and we hope those developing his agenda are paying attention. Our hat is off to IDSA and CFR for sponsoring such visionary work in the policy realm that is likely to advance the interests of the United States, India, and the world. We are taking its recommendations very seriously in formulating our own initiative. Stay tuned.”

See also Peter Garretson’s Op Ed piece in the Sakal Times: “Power: The Final Frontier” (2.2 MB PDF file).

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