The White House wants to make sure a death comet doesn't kill us all

Asteroid apocalypse.
(Image credit: iStock)

While obliteration by way of giant meteor sounds appealing to some people at this point, others would very much like to avoid going the way of the dinosaurs any time soon. Those in the latter group will be relieved to hear that the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy has written a 19-page report detailing our "National Near-Earth Object Preparedness Strategy," and it outlines what America needs to do to prevent an asteroid apocalypse:

Overall, the group found the U.S. needs more tools to track space rocks, and that greater international cooperation is necessary. Specifically, the report outlines several goals, including increasing the ability both in the U.S. and in other countries to more rapidly detect [Near-Earth Objects], track their movements and characterize the objects more completely. It also says more research is needed to study how best to deflect and disrupt a space rock that might be on a collision course with Earth. Furthermore, the strategy calls for better and more integrated modeling of NEO trajectories to reduce uncertainties of their orbits and possible impact effects.If indeed there is a NEO strike, the strategy also seeks to develop coherent national and international emergency procedures for different impact scenarios, be it an object hitting deep ocean, a coastal region or a major landmass. We must be prepared to respond as well as recover from such a blow in an orderly and timely manner, the report finds. [Scientific American]

Subscribe to The Week

Escape your echo chamber. Get the facts behind the news, plus analysis from multiple perspectives.


Sign up for The Week's Free Newsletters

From our morning news briefing to a weekly Good News Newsletter, get the best of The Week delivered directly to your inbox.

From our morning news briefing to a weekly Good News Newsletter, get the best of The Week delivered directly to your inbox.

Sign up
To continue reading this article...
Continue reading this article and get limited website access each month.
Get unlimited website access, exclusive newsletters plus much more.
Cancel or pause at any time.
Already a subscriber to The Week?
Not sure which email you used for your subscription? Contact us
Jeva Lange

Jeva Lange was the executive editor at She formerly served as The Week's deputy editor and culture critic. She is also a contributor to Screen Slate, and her writing has appeared in The New York Daily News, The Awl, Vice, and Gothamist, among other publications. Jeva lives in New York City. Follow her on Twitter.