The search for extraterrestrial life could get federal funding

Time Lapse SETI Institute

Up until 1993, the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, better known as SETI searched the cosmos for otherworldly beings, receiving funding from NASA for their research.

But, in the 1990s their Federal funding was removed, limiting their research and forcing them to rely on private funding for their research ever since.

However, all that may be about to change.

Recently, Texas Congressman, Lamar Smith, created a bill asking for $10 million a year to be set aside for the search for alien life, some of which could go to SETI.

Seth Shostak with the SETI Institute said funding would make a huge difference.

"Planets are not rare in the universe. There are a trillion. That's with a T. A trillion planets just in the Milky Way Galaxy we live in. And there are a trillion other galaxies each with a trillion planets. So the idea that there may be someone out there. That's not a crazy idea. Right? So to look for them. Seems to make sense," said Shostak.

It turns out Redding sits at the gateway to their interplanetary search.

Shostak said the antenna they use for their research is only an hour and twenty minutes east of the city.

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