Achieving a lunar outpost is important not as a means of escaping our home planet, but learning better ways to thrive on it
ASTRONAUT Gene Cernan was the last person to walk on the moon, in 1972. “Apollo came before its time,” he said. “President Kennedy reached far into the 21st century, grabbed a decade of time and slipped it neatly into the 1960s and 1970s.”
Fifty years later, we have reached that decade of time. Many nations and private enterprises are plotting crewed missions to the moon. This time, it isn’t merely a race to get there. The intention is to build a lasting presence, as we explore in a special feature.
You might reasonably ask why, when we have enough problems …