We have only been on the moon for a few days as a species and we have already littered – a lot.

There is a lot of crap on the moon.
Really, there are 96 bags of urine, feces or vomit on the moon. In the past 50 years, they have been left there by various missions.
We have only been on the moon for a few days as a species and we have already littered – a lot.
We have also left more than 70 rovers, modules, crashed orbiters and other space craft junk.
As a tourist on the moon, you might run across one of 12 television cameras, five American flags, two golf balls, or several improvised javelins,
You might also find empty packages of space food, used wet wipes or personal hygiene kits.
There are tributes left in honor of American and Soviet astronauts who died advancing the space race, a silicon disk bearing goodwill messages from world leaders and various medals and pins in honor of astronauts who touched the moon’s surface.
Charles Duke, the tenth and youngest man to ever walk on the moon left a photo of his family on the surface.
There is even a feather from Air Force Mascot Baggin that was used in the famous hammer-feather drop experiment during the Apollo 15 mission where the hammer and feather fell at the exact same rate, proving Galileo's theory that in the absence of atmosphere, objects will fall at the same rate regardless of mass.
The problem with the residue of our exploration is that none of the almost 200 tons of space trash we have left on the moon will go anywhere. Since the moon has no atmosphere, there is no wind, no rain or any other familiar earthly process that would disperse or erode or otherwise degrade the materials even though temperatures on the surface range from negative 245 on the dark side of the moon to more than 270 on the bright side.
Even though no man has been on the satellite’s surface – or even orbited it - since 1972 the amount of lunar litter continues to grow as we send probes and other spacecraft to send back readings from the moon.
The United States has cut its space program to save some cash and the Russians are focusing elsewhere as well. But both China and India have hopes of making it to the moon soon.
China has landed a rover on the surface and successfully returned a probe from Earth’s nearest neighbor just this month.
America has a half dozen men on the surface and found nothing that compelled us to return. However, some theorize that there is a helium isotope that could be valuable in nuclear energy production and possibly tons of water in the form of ice at the moon’s poles.
Until those theories are proven or disproven, countries will continue to poke and prod the moon and leave more and more space junk on the surface.

Kent  Bush is the publisher of the Butler County Times Gazette and can be reached at: kbush@butlercountytimesgazette.com