Near space is getting filled up with lots of junk that menaces productive activities in space. Last month the Chinese government blew up one of its old satellites to prove that it could reach the satellites of other nosey countries if it wanted to. According to Space.com:
The satellite's destruction is now being viewed as the most prolific and severe fragmentation in the course of five decades of space operations.
Last night, a Russian Briz-M rocket that had failed to carry a communications satellite into orbit broke up over Australia, leaving behind a similarly large cloud of debris and some nice pictures.