2 The Next Space Race commerce, space tourism, and space development. For long-duration operations in space, it will be imperative to devote resources to nuclear power and propulsion systems. Solar energy will be indispensable for further development in space and for providing power to Earth. And asteroid and Lunar mining, along with in-space manufacturing, will provide the resources needed to fully realize all that space has to offer humanity. Before the Trump administration, the U.S. government had not championed the importance of space, and American space objectives previously vacillated between presidential administrations. Some- what surprisingly, a transfer of power to the Biden administration has not steered the positive trend in U.S. space policy off course. Follow- ing a series of executive orders by the Trump administration, the Biden administration’s National Space Council has continued on the path to space modernization with the release of a U.S. Space Priorities Frame- work, which mostly tracked with the previous administration’s space guidance.3 The U.S. government can no longer ignore either its reliance on space assets for military and civilian use or the potential advantages of a space economy, already worth $450 billion and doubling less than every 10 years, with a potential to grow to trillions of dollars over the next few decades.4 EXPANDING GLOBAL INTEREST IN THE SPACE ECONOMY While the exact magnitude of the space economy is up for debate, there is now broad consensus that the space economy is poised to grow signifi- cantly. Major financial institutions have provided forecasts of what that economy might look like by 2040. Goldman Sachs has estimated the pro- jected value of the space economy at $1.1 trillion Morgan Stanley reached the same figure.5 Similarly, Citigroup places the space economy value at over $1 trillion at that time.6 The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, meanwhile, pegs the value even higher: $1.5 trillion.7 The figure projected for 2050 is even more impressive—estimated by both Bank of America and Merrill Lynch at $2.7 trillion annually (for comparative measure, this is only a fraction of the $10 trillion value estimated by China at that time).8 Reflect- ing this optimism, former U.S. secretary of commerce Wilbur Ross gave a speech at the 2020 World Economic Forum in Davos, in which he noted that “current industry projections place the 2040 global space economy at between $1 and $3 trillion. And I think we will certainly get to a tril- lion before 2030.”9 Ross specifically mentioned America’s near-term pri- orities in this domain to include Lunar mining, asteroid mining, space tourism, and remaining the premier space power. Former vice president Mike Pence has similarly said, “[I]n this century, we’re going back to the Moon with new ambitions, not just to travel there, not just to develop
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