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    UNIS/OS/432
    7 February 2014

    Long-term sustainability of outer space activities among the key topics of Scientific and Technical Subcommittee at its 51st Session

    VIENNA, 7 February (UN Information Service) - The long-term sustainability of outer space activities will be one of the key topics at the 51st session of the Scientific and Technical Subcommittee of the United Nations Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (COPUOS), which takes place in Vienna, Austria, from 10 to 21 February 2014.

    The long-term sustainability of outer space activities is a matter of interest and importance for the international community as a whole. Space activities play a vital role in supporting sustainable development on Earth and the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals, and in contributing to the post-2015 development agenda process. The Working Group on the Long-term Sustainability of Outer Space Activities will continue its consideration of a set of draft guidelines aimed to improve the long-term sustainability of outer space activities. The set of guidelines includes recommendations on sustainable space utilization supporting sustainable development on Earth; space debris, space operations and tools to support collaborative space situational awareness; space weather; and regulatory regimes and guidance for actors in the space arena..

    Other key items for discussion include near-Earth objects (NEOs), in view of the recommendations for an international response to the near-Earth object impact threat, adopted by the Subcommittee and endorsed by the General Assembly in 2013, space debris mitigation, disaster management and space weather research. In the two week session, the Subcommittee will also debate recent developments in global navigation satellite systems, safe use of nuclear power sources in outer space, the use of the geostationary orbit, and matters related to remote sensing of the Earth by satellites, including applications for developing countries. The Subcommittee will also look at how the post-2015 development agenda relates to the use of space technology and its applications in support of sustainable development goals.

    Other highlights of the 51st session of the Subcommittee include:

    • On 17 February from 15:00-18:00, a symposium entitled "Commercial applications of global navigation satellite systems", organized by the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA), will be held in Board Room D.
    • On 18 February from 13:00-14:00 a lunchtime seminar entitled "Space and development: space technology and research for global health" will be organized by Japan in cooperation with the World Health Organization (WHO) in Board Room DOn 10 and 11 February there will be an Expert Meeting on "Improving Space Weather Forecasting in the Next Decade", organized by the United States, its National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA),held in Conference Room C6, 7th floor. This meeting will consider the current state of forecasting and new observational concepts for space missions that will provide new data for space weather forecasting in the future.
    • On 19 and 20 February, there will be an Expert Meeting on International Space Station Benefits for Health, organized by UNOOSA, and held in Room C0713/15.
    • From 10 to 21 February, the exhibition on China's Space Activities will be held in the Rotunda, Vienna International Centre.

    Information about the 51 st session of the Scientific and Technical Subcommittee is also available at: http://www.unoosa.org/oosa/en/COPUOS/stsc/2014/index.html

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    For further information, please contact:

    Sinead Harvey
    United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA)
    Telephone: (+43-1) 26060-8718
    Email: sinead.harvey[at]unoosa.org