The National Space Society vision is people living and working in space


25 March 1998

NEWS RELEASE:
STATEMENT BY NATIONAL SPACE SOCIETY ON TODAY'S RELEASE OF GENERAL PUBLIC SPACE TRAVEL AND TOURISM STUDY REPORT

CONTACT: Karen Rugg, 202-543-1900

(Washington, DC) -- In response to today's release by the Space Transportation Association (STA) and NASA of their two-year General Public Space Travel and Tourism Study Report, Pat Dasch, executive director of the National Space Society (NSS), issued the following statement:

"It is clear with the release of today's study that the question to ask about developing a space tourism industry is no longer 'can it ever happen,' but rather 'how long until it does'.

"Our initial review of this report finds promise in several areas. The study proves that a form of space tourism and travel for average citizens already exists and that this market is expanding. It provides a clear definition for an industry/government partnership, with NASA defining its role as continuing work towards achieving cheap access to space and as developing other specific technologies that may be applicable to this industry in the future. The study also places the responsibility for developing and defining the tourism market on the shoulders of private industry.

"Today's event was significant as well in the presence of Representatives Dana Rohrabacher, Dave Weldon and Ralph Hall. To hear our elected officials recognize and articulate the value of space tourism as an industry is encouraging. We heartily agree with Mr. Rohrabacher's assessment of that value as 'permitting the dreamers to participate personally.'"

The National Space Society, founded in 1974, is an independent, nonprofit space advocacy organization headquartered in Washington, DC. Its 23,000 members and 90 chapters around the world actively promote a spacefaring civilization. Information on NSS and space exploration is available at its website.

NOTE: The next issue of NSS's magazine, Ad Astra, will be a special report on space tourism, available May 15. Reporters interested in receiving a copy should contact Karen Rugg at 202-543-1900 or krugg@nss.org. The General Public Space Travel and Tourism Study Report is available online. The document is an Adobe Acrobat file; free viewer available from Adobe.


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