Asteroid mining hasn’t even gotten off the ground yet.
But it’s already drawing some bad – and very misguided – press.
I wrote to you last month to tell you about a new startup that wants to mine asteroids for resources that could be worth trillions. Indeed, as I said, just one of these rocks the size of an art museum could be worth $100 billion. (See “‘Mining the Sky’ for an Abundant Future.”)
I also told you to keep an eye on Planetary Resources and its breakthrough high-tech system as a possible future investment. Not only does the new firm have the backing of several billionaires, it also has the support of the U.S. government.
And let’s not forget our friends across the pond…
This month, the European Space Agency will begin training a team to land on one of these giant space rocks and return with samples for researchers to study. They want to tap asteroids for metals and minerals, too.
Clearly, some very bright leaders all over the world believe “mining the sky” will be a key part of our future.
That’s why I still believe the question isn’t if we will mine asteroids, but when.
But in a story last Tuesday, none other than The Wall Street Journal tried to cast doubt on the whole concept.
The headline says it all: “Exhausting Earth’s Resources? Not So Fast.”
The central part of the report is that Earth has more resources than we can dig up in decades.
As a long-time Journal reader, I have to say I was surprised the writer was so naive. The article focused on only one aspect of space mining – that Earth is running out of resources like gold, silver, and platinum. As I see it, the Journal was bending over backwards to support the current, terrestrial mining industry.