Earth is defenseless against asteroids that could cause utter annihilation, says former NASA astronaut Russell “Rusty” Schweickart.

No, he didn’t spot any hostile extraterrestrials during his time in space. Schweickart told Business Insider at last month that he’s concerned about Earth’s inability to spot and monitor potentially-disastrous asteroid impacts.

All it would take to fix that, Schweickart went on to explain, is if NASA would allocate the $40 million needed to launch an orbital observatory called the Near-Earth Object Camera (NEOCam), which was specifically built to detect asteroids but has been sitting idly since it was constructed in 2006. NEOCam would assist current land-based observatories by getting a clearer view of the sky as it orbits the planet.

“It’s a critical discovery telescope to protect life on Earth, and it’s ready to go,” Schweickart told Business Insider.

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