In the 20th century humans began to investigate ways to penetrate the atmosphere. Today a communications apparatus installed beyond the atmosphere permits us to remain in constant touch with each other from any place on the planet. Orbital outposts are providing the information to enable human beings to adapt to this new environment. Scientific instruments placed in this area are exploring the depths of the cosmos and investigating the state of the environment on the planet below. National security systems have placed monitoring devices that track developments and movements of opponents making surprise attacks less likely. Indeed, the functioning of contemporary society is totally dependent on these technological resources orbiting the Earth and without them modern civilization would no longer function.
These activities have effectively expanded the territory of planet Earth from its solid dimensions of 12,756 kilometers to a diameter of approximately 84,328 kilometers. As the 21st century unfolds, humanity finds that it needs more room and more resources to sustain its numbers and to maintain its thirst for further development. The finite planetary resources that contributed to its present state are being irrevocably exhausted to unsustainable levels and their uncontrolled use within the biosphere is resulting in severe ecological consequences. As it is unequipped to occupy and transform a neighboring planet to meet its growing needs, humanity's next logical step will be to discover and inhabit the last reaches of its own planet - to expand its activities to Earth's true boundaries as defined by the laws of physics.
Greater Earth Diagram
All celestial bodies of significant concentrated mass exert a field of gravitational attraction around their cores which extends to the point of tangential intersection with other celestial bodies. Earth's gravitational influence extends 1.5 million kilometers in all directions from its center where it meets the gravitational influence of the Sun. This sphere has 13 million times the volume of the physical Earth and through it, passes some more than 50,000 times the amount of solar power which is available on the surface of the planet. In addition to energy, within this sphere of 3 million kilometers are enormous amounts of other resources, including the Moon and occasional passing asteroids. Like the territorial waters surrounding nations these resources naturally belong to our planet and should be used for the ultimate benefit of humanity and all life which has originated here. As it has throughout its history, humanity must understand and seek nourishment from its home planet and it must now once again refine its perception of the planet in order to recognize and embrace the perception of a greater, richer and more sustainable Earth.
This is Greater Earth and within its boundaries our species will find the room, resources and opportunities that it will need to survive and prosper in the current millennium. To do so, its next step is to exercise its fullest capabilities to occupy and enjoy this new territory. Undertaken responsibility and consequently, the severe pressures and stresses currently facing our civilization may be mitigated which may in turn lead to eventually achieving worldwide security, prosperity and ecological balance.