So I'm writing a story set in the close(ish) future(say 2130), and space debris is starting to be a real problem. Stations in orbit are constantly having to maneuver out of the paths of orbital debris, at least a few satellites have been taken out, and it's just a big hassle all around.
So (space organization) gets a few meetings together and they decide that a reasonable solution would be to launch a few lightsail craft equipped with high power pulse lasers to maneuver space debris using ablation to deorbit it. The lightsail craft would be maneuvered with the help of a laser array on the surface of the Earth, and they would deorbit debris by ablating the debris in the opposite direction of its flight, hopefully slowing it down enough to make its trajectory intersect the atmosphere.
But is this really an effective solution? What are some ways to make it more effective? Bonus points if you can tell me the math required to calculate how much power the laser would have to draw to ablate steel in 1/60th of a second or shorter.