The moon: home to the universe's latest national park?
The moon: home to the universe's latest national park? Alistair Brightman

American wants a national park on the moon.

PERHAPS in fear of foreigners coming and messing up the dirt or stealing the jobs of regular hard-working rocks, legislation has been proposed in the House of Representatives that would establish a national park on the landing sites on the Moon used by the Apollo missions between 1969 and 1972.

Representatives Donna Edwards (Maryland) and Eddie Bernice Johnson (Texas) brought a bill before the House that would create The Apollo Lunar Landing Sites National Historical Park and preserve any artefacts left on the Moon's surface during Apollo 11 through 17.

"As commercial enterprises and foreign nations acquire the ability to land on the Moon, it is necessary to protect the Apollo lunar landing sites for posterity," the Apollo Lunar Landing Legacy Act, H.R. 2617 states.

The pre-emptive measure comes in spite of manned missions to the Moon now being pretty low on the world's list of space exploration priorities.

The "historical park" would be set up one year after the bill passes and run jointly by Nasa and the Department of the Interior.

It would allow the government to accept donations from private companies to "provide visitor services and administrative facilities within reasonable proximity to the Historical Park," though it is not clear whether this would be enforced with white picket fences or a really surly security guard astronaut with a yardstick.