Space tourism won't be affordable for the masses any time soon

Rep. Earl Blumenauer, a Democrat who represents Portland and a few of its suburbs, proposed a tax on house vacationers Tuesday, the identical day that Bezos, his brother Mark, and two different passengers took a brief rocket trip to the edge of outer space.
Elon Musk’s SpaceX, which has a contract to ship US astronauts and provides to the International Space Station for NASA, additionally has plans for tourism flights to orbit Earth in addition to to the moon in coming years. Ticket costs haven’t been disclosed however they’re believed to be within the thousands and thousands.

“This is potentially going to be a very significant business,” Blumenauer instructed NCS Business. “Why should a family that is taking kids to Legoland pay a 9.5% ticket tax and other charges on their airline tickets and space tourists who spend a gazillion dollars have tax free tourism?”

It’s too early to say at what fee any new house tourism tax ought to be levied, or what the cash raised from the tax ought to be spent on, Blumenauer mentioned.

“It’s meant to be a starting point of a conversation that’s important to get ahead of. Perhaps we’re already behind,” he mentioned, referring to the current house tourism flights. (The invoice would exempt NASA spaceflights for scientific analysis functions.)

Space tourism companies have all benefited from the US house program funded by taxpayers, he added, and argued the companies will not be damage or compelled to shift to a distinct nation for his or her launches.

“We’re talking about something that is not a huge burdensome tax. These are people can afford to pay whatever the tax will be,” he mentioned.

Space tourism won't be affordable for the masses any time soonSpace tourism won't be affordable for the masses any time soon

Blumenauer has dubbed his invoice the Securing Protections Against Carbon Emissions (SPACE) Tax Act. Rockets that burn liquid oxygen and liquid hydrogen, because the Blue Origin rocket did on Tuesday, don’t emit carbon, solely water vapor. But Blumenauer mentioned that even water vapor could cause injury to the ozone layer. And the fuels utilized by Virgin and SpaceX do emit carbon.

“I’m not opposed to this type of space innovation,” he mentioned in his announcement in regards to the invoice. “However, things that are done purely for tourism or entertainment, and that don’t have a scientific purpose, should in turn support the public good.”

Neither Blue Origin, Virgin Galactic (SPCE) nor SpaceX responded to a request for touch upon the tax proposal.

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