Obama advisor: Earth in danger of an apocalyptic asteroid


US President Barack Obama’s chief science advisor warned that our planet and humanity is in utter danger of an apocalyptic asteroid.

The White House’s Officer of Science and Technology Policy John Holdren has lifted the lid on the potential danger of massive rocks wreaking havoc on Earth.

NASA has made great progress on tracking deadly space rocks, he said.

But Mr Holdren revealed there’s still a lot of work to do.

Speaking at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center during a discussion on the agency’s planned Asteroid Redirect Mission, he said: “We are not fully prepared.

“But we are on a trajectory to get much more so.”

We should be taking the threat of deadly asteroids seriously, Mr Holdren warned.

The science boffin drew attention to the devastating meteor that blasted the Russian city Chelyabinsk which injured 1,200 people in February 2013.

He added: “We know that this does happen.

“Strikes such as what happened in Chelyabinsk are thought to happen once in every hundred years, while Tunguska is regarded as a once in 1,000 years event.”

NASA plans to launch a space mission into the asteroids, agency officials have said.

The ARM mission costing $1.25 billion will give scientists an insight into the massive space rocks, the top advisor said.

The top science advisor stressed the importance of making ourselves prepared for the “rare events”.

Mr Holdren said: “If we are going to be as capable a civilisation as our technology allows, we need to be prepared for even those rare events.

“Because they could do a lot of damage to the Earth.

“This is a hazard that, 65 million years ago, the dinosaurs succumbed to.

“We have to be smarter than the dinosaurs.”



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