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Space Debris Conference kicks off in Riyadh

The Saudi Space Agency organised the conference in cooperation with the Communications, Space and Technology Authority and the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA)

The first edition of the Space Debris Conference has commenced in Riyadh today, February 11. Under the theme “Towards Securing the Future of the Global Space Economy,” the conference is graced by the presence of Engineer Abdullah bin Amer Al-Swaha, Chairman of Board of Saudi Space Agency, and Dr Mohammed bin Saud Altamimi, CEO of Saudi Space Agency, alongside over 400 experts, 70 speakers, and numerous CEOs and leaders in the space sector globally.

Organised by the Saudi Space Agency in collaboration with the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) as a content partner, and the Communications and Space Technology Commission as a hosting partner, the conference aims to establish a platform for global dialogue to address the pressing challenge of space debris. It emphasises the Kingdom’s role in space protection, fostering communication, building partnerships, and exchanging experiences among international, regional, and local entities engaged in the space sector. The conference advocates for deeper partnerships between government agencies, the private sector, and academic institutions to devise innovative solutions to sector challenges, particularly in reducing the impact of space debris.

In light of the conference launch, Engineer Abdullah bin Amer Al-Swaha highlighted its significance amidst escalating space activities and the associated challenges that could impede the sustainability of space exploration in the future. He underscored the Kingdom’s initiative to convene leaders, experts, and specialists in the sector to confront the challenges of space debris and ensure sustainability. The conference, spanning two days, serves as an important step towards enhancing global cooperation in space and provides a unique platform for dialogue and idea exchange in this pivotal field.

Dr Mohammed bin Saud Altamimi emphasised that the conference aligns with the Kingdom’s steadfast aspirations to bolster its role in space and its commitment to achieving sustainable development goals and innovation in the field. He stressed that the conference would facilitate communication and cooperation with global partners to address the major challenge of space debris effectively, thereby contributing to a sustainable future.

Dr Altamimi referenced Saudi Arabia’s role in launching the Leaders Initiative for Space Economy during its presidency of the G20, aiming to enhance space cooperation among countries to maximise the benefits of the space economy and utilise space data to support sustainable development, food security, and global health.

The conference’s first day includes five main sessions discussing legislation and future trends in addressing the consequences of space debris. It will present various ideas for future solutions contributing to risk elimination and Earth’s protection. Sessions will cover topics such as trends, risks, and solutions, initiatives for removing space debris, enhancing orbital safety, shaping the future of space governance, and addressing space debris challenges and sustainability.

Accompanying the conference is an exhibition featuring local and international companies specialising in space technologies and sciences. The exhibition aims to raise awareness of the risks of space debris and highlight rapid technological developments contributing to addressing this global challenge facing humanity as a whole.