5-speed listening (Falling Rockets - Level 2)

Bigger risk of being killed by falling space rocket






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Have you ever worried about a rocket hitting you on the head? This is not high on the list of life's worries. The chance of some space junk hitting us is almost zero. However, that is changing. Scientists say that in the next ten years, there is a growing likelihood that a rocket part could fall from space and kill someone. More countries are sending more rockets into space, so space is becoming crowded. The scientists want nations and rocket companies to be more responsible. They want them to control how rocket parts re-enter our atmosphere.

The scientists researched the number of rockets in space, and the risk of someone being hit by falling debris. There were a record 133 rocket launches in 2021. That record will be broken this year. Scientists say over 60 per cent of rockets are abandoned in space. These abandoned spacecraft can circle the earth for years before they break up and fall back down. Rocket parts are more likely to hit someone in the Global South. However, most rockets are launched from the Global North. The scientists say countries and companies are "exporting risk to the rest of the world".

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