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By Lacey Gardner

Satellite Madness; threatening our atmosphere and night sky


Column by Frederick Sinclair, photo courtesy of NASA

A previous article reviewed the fact that mankind and all of natures creatures exist not on the surface of the earth, but 60 miles inside of her. The air we breath, the weather, the protective ozone layer and ionosphere are but a few of the critical atmospheric life support systems enveloping the earth. All is connected and history reveals that what we put into the air can have devastating impact.

 Last Sunday, Space X launched 23 telecommunications satellites from Cape Canaveral, in the morning and 22 more from Vandenberg Air Force Base in the evening. Telecom satellite launchings, occurring every few days this year, bringing the total number of operating satellites, irradiating the earth with microwaves, to about 8,800. The telecom industry is in a frenzy to satisfy the increasing demand for bandwidth (signal)  by billions of human cell phone users. There are currently 147 companies and government agencies from 34 countries that are operating or planning fleets of satellites which number a half million orbiters. Ninety more  applications are pending, which will result in over a million telecom satellites orbiting inside the atmosphere with tens of thousands of ground based receivers and transmitters.

The satellites are relatively compact and powered by solar panels. Compressed gas fuels ion thrusters which adjust the satellite position in orbit . Over 25,000 corrections in orbit have been reported so far in 2023; to prevent collisions with other orbiters and debris. Current satellite designs “run out of gas” after 5 years, orbits are expected to decay and they will burn, melt and pollute during uncontrolled re-entry into denser atmospheric layers.  

Who then is responsible for the evaluation of the environmental impacts to our atmosphere by the fumes from tens of thousands of rocket launches and eventually, an equal number of replacement launches?   What will be the impact of these satellites burning up on re-entry? What is the effect of a million powerful transmitters beaming microwaves down and an unknown number of ground stations transmitting microwave responses back to orbit ? How is wireless microwave radiation currently warming the atmosphere and how much will several thousand times these levels contribute to global warming and climate change? What about health impacts ? The list of questions  goes on and on.

The answers, enactment of appropriate protections and embarking on new alternatives are critical to the well being of all forms of life on Earth.

Established laws, agencies and regulations, intended to protect and manage hazards to the environment, are being ignored by the Telecommunications industry and related power structure; spending billions of dollars to capture, control and work around any obstacle to their motives of profit and control. Current telecom sponsored legislation under review by Congress, if approved, will declare wireless infrastructure development exempt from all existing federal, state and local laws which may interfere with the rapid deployment of wireless access to broadband communications.  Local government input and public comment in the placement of towers, rooftop arrays, small cell antennas, satellite ground stations etc., would be curtailed.  The proposed laws would provide a telecom infrastructure exemption from environmental, health and safety, archeological, and historic preservation protection programs.   


  • Contact Congressman Langworthy and request that he endorse a full and specific investigation into and open review of the issues involving current telecommunication proposals to Congress.     phone: 202-225-3161
  • Let our Town and Village officials know your opinion on the importance of protecting our public health and safety and ask that they investigate a municipally sponsored  fiber optic cable access to broadband  and internet for every home, apartment, and business location.
  • Consider personally trending away from wireless communication systems in favor of wired (fiber optic) connections via device docking stations. Any switch over to wired access will reduce the overall reliance on and addiction to wireless technology and the exposures to microwave radiation.
  • Contact Frederick Sinclair at   phone:  607-247-5032 and join the list of residents who will be provided access to information and links to important studies and reports.

The aesthetic wonder of the night sky has already been affected by the thousands of telecom satellites launched to date. Astronomers, scientists and star gazers  have raised serious concerns over the planned “constellation” of  a million telecom satellites which are, threatening our atmosphere and night sky.  

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