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Jeff Bezos wants to get back to the moon, but he knows space is no place for going solo

Jeff Bezos receives the Axel Springer Award, Berlin, Germany - 24 Apr 2018
Amazon.com Inc. Chief Executive and Blue Origin founder Jeff Bezos in April.
(Clemens Bilan / EPA-EFE/REX/Shutterstock)

Amazon’s Jeff Bezos on Friday advocated a return to the moon and said developing infrastructure for humans to live in space should be a collaborative effort among many companies and space agencies.

A long-stated goal of the Amazon CEO and founder of Blue Origin space company has been to see millions of people living and working in space, and he said the first step was to reduce launch costs. His Kent, Wash. company, Blue Origin, is developing a rocket called New Glenn that will have a reusable first-stage booster.

That rocket is intended to provide commercial launch services for satellites by the end of 2020.

Staying on Earth “is not necessarily extinction, but the alternative is stasis,” Bezos said during an onstage discussion Friday night with Geekwire journalist Alan Boyle at the National Space Society’s International Space Development Conference in Los Angeles.

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“We will have to stop growing, which I think is a very bad future,” he said.

Bezos said moving “heavy” industries off Earth and into space would be more efficient because solar power could be utilized for energy. But to get there, “thousands of companies working in concert” will have to lay the infrastructure for this space entrepreneurial vision, he said.

“It won’t be done by just Blue Origin, it won’t be done by just NASA,” said Bezos, who has sold about $1 billion in Amazon stock a year and put most of that into his space company. “It’s not a zero-sum game.”

Bezos also said he was a “big fan” of the White House’s call to return to the moon, saying, “I don’t like to skip steps.”

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Blue Origin has said it is developing a lunar lander called Blue Moon that would deliver large payloads.

samantha.masunaga@latimes.com

Twitter: @smasunaga


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