The European Space Agency is the single most powerful force in space, and the offspring of an economic consortium of European Nations. They combine the military and economic forces of France, Britain, Greece, Spain, Belgium, the Netherlands, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, The United German Republic, Portugal, Denmark, and Austria. They are the largest and most advanced space faring organization, they control the lion’s share of all space-related activity, and they depend on the European Technology Commission.
This commission is responsible for keeping Europe’s technology up with the rest of the world, if possible in front of course, and is the only commission in Europe that makes a profit thanks to the percentage that is paid to the European Space agency for all space-related manufacturing.
The Rise of The European Space Agency
After proving their technological supremacy with the introduction of the Hermes II space plane in 1998, the European Space Agency looked fit to control most of the rapidly expanding sphere of colonized space. In the same year, the agency began the recruitment of millions of people from the central African nations where entire townships were brought into orbit, trained and put to work. They concentrated on building workshacks and the spaceplanes to supply them, this way they took control of Low Earth Orbit for manufacturing and colonization. In this endeavor, it was funded by several multination combines from Europe, who traded material and money for orbital factories.
To get these huge projects into space, the European Space Agency made a deal with the Soviets, who provided heavy lifting capacity in exchange for spaceplane flights to their own workshacks. Eventually, the European Space Agency helped found Orbital Air, the main carrier of personnel into space and the only licensed owner of the Aries 15. Orbital Air and the European Space Agency are close friends, the Euros put some money inside the pockets of the Orbital mega-corporation and helped them win the First Corporate War, this created a joint venture where Orbital Air takes care that the orbital colonies and workshacks are appropriately supplied and the EuroSpace Agency builds some planes.
The Euros don’t get along with the NASA, mostly because they’re worried by the aggressive stance of the United States in orbit, tied with the loss of their technological lead, which made the European Space Agency become more interested in construction of military vessels than they were before, just in case the United States decided they were treating Euros too well.
As the Agency put a lot of effort on having the largest number of workstations and automated space factories, this made them very, very rich as the Agency takes a 10% commission of all space-related manufacturing because, basically, all this manufacture is done in their workshacks.
The current Agency’s main vehicle is the Aries 15 spaceplane. They lost some of its technological lead over the other space powers, especially the Japanese, which is embarrassing for the European Technology Commission, but is probably going to lead to more stability in orbit in the long run.
The orbital colony Crystal Palace is their first long-term venture, which sections of the immense habitat are lent to the United States, Russia, Japan, and China. But that’s not the only space colony controlled by the Euros, as they also built the three O’Neil colonies, although during the O’Neil Wars they lost control of O’Neil One and the Galileo Cylinder and now they maintain Crystal Palace, Paradise Station, and the moon cities of Tycho and Copernicus.
In addition, they control most of the law enforcement in Low Earth Orbit and High Orbit, through an Interpol controlled space police. Interpol is responsible for all facets of law enforcement in space, their work is complicated by the number of different national interests in orbit. Recently most orbit capable nations have given in to pressure put in them by the media and they have allowed Interpol jurisdiction over their off-planet interests, thanks to the success of joining Interpol and Soviet Sovereign Republics operations. The only nation that still insists on keeping the Interpol out of its orbitals is, you guessed right, the United States. This doesn’t sit well in Europe, in the European Space Agency in particular, who are expecting the United States to start a war any day now.