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Thread: USA’s Artemis Accords

  1. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    If you start off by excluding two of the major players in space exploration and then expect them to accept the Accord as the basis of re-negotiation of the "Outer Space Treaty" - I would say it is laying the foundation of failure of any agreement.
    As no one has asked anyone outside the US sphere to "accept" the accord, that issue is moot. And there hasn't been any agreements about it yet... the Accord has just been made public. As far as re-negotiation of the OST, the key word is "negotiation". Offer, counter-offer, etc. Which has not started yet.
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  2. #32
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    Another article on the same subject.

    "Outdated treaties won’t stop the rush to control resources in space"

    https://www.aspistrategist.org.au/ou...rces-in-space/

    The 2019 movie Ad Astra had a US military base on the moon and a memorable battle scene involving a moon rover, implying that by late this century the moon will be heavily militarised. A question now being discussed in space policy circles is whether fact will follow science fiction, as the US Space Force considers exactly what its role will be. It has some pretty ambitious ideas, and a recent report indicates that its thinking will be shaped by a deep astrostrategic perspective.

    So it wasn’t much of a surprise when news emerged that a group of US Air Force Academy cadets are researching the idea of military bases on the lunar surface. The academy’s Institute for Applied Space Policy and Strategy has a ‘military on the moon’ research team that was set up ‘to evaluate the possibility and necessity of a sustained United States presence on the lunar surface’. The focus seems to be on a military base, though there’s little information on exactly what they’re planning.

    But the very notion of a military base on the moon has the space law community understandably seeing red.
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  3. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    Another article on the same subject.

    "Outdated treaties won’t stop the rush to control resources in space"

    https://www.aspistrategist.org.au/ou...rces-in-space/
    So speculation based on a movie is the best you have and you think the situation will somehow be improved by the likes of China and Russia refusing to negotiate an updated treaty? Really would be simpler to admit you misread the original article you know.

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    Yet another article from the Space Review - "Outer space needs private law"

    https://www.thespacereview.com/article/4015/1

    The Cold War is back, and it’s headed into orbit. American tensions with China and Russia are escalating, especially since Russia’s suspected anti-satellite weapons test. The stakes are nothing less than a peaceful future in space. Operations in orbit and beyond require extraordinary precision and certainty. Any conflict can seriously hinder operational efficiency for both governments and businesses. Fortunately, there’s a solution that can benefit all parties: Giving private law a major role in ordering the cosmos.

    Undoubtedly, space must be governed. But governance is not the same thing as government. The virtue of private law—a body of rules grounded on consensual practices, rather than sovereign authority—is that it can lay the foundations for future space activities, without sparking a governmental scramble to project power. Where the reach of the state ends, private governance begins. It’s worked many times on Earth, and it can work in space.
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    THE DIPLOMAT carries the following article in its latest issue - "What Does China Think About NASA’s Artemis Accords?"

    https://thediplomat.com/2020/09/what...temis-accords/

    In May 2020, NASA announced a sweeping new set of principles designed to safeguard the use of outer space titled the Artemis Accords. Seeking to ensure transparency and peace in outer space, facilitate international cooperation, and encourage sustainable lunar resource extraction, the Accords “establish a common set of principles to govern the civil exploration and use of outer space.” These principles also include requirements that space activities are interoperable, scientific data is shared, nations commit to providing emergency assistance, and that historical sites are preserved as artifacts.

    In contrast to the 1967 Outer Space Treaty (OST) and the 1979 Moon Agreement, the Artemis Accords are not a new multilateral treaty, but principles that build upon the legal foundations set by the OST. Moreover, NASA intends to enshrine these principles with partner nations through the process of bilateral cooperation and general state practice. In other words, the act of nations accepting these principles through their cooperative ventures with the United States will help calcify norms into international law, even without a legal instrument.

    However, the purportedly noble goals of the Accords have not evaded skepticism among some spacefaring nations, particularly the People’s Republic of China.
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  6. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by selvaarchi View Post
    THE DIPLOMAT carries the following article in its latest issue - "What Does China Think About NASA’s Artemis Accords?"

    https://thediplomat.com/2020/09/what...temis-accords/
    Again China's opinion is irrelevant since the Accords would only apply to the USA and its partners, why do you continue to pretend this has anything to do with the OST?

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    What does Kim Kardashian West think of the Artemis Accords? Just as applicable!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Garrison View Post
    Again China's opinion is irrelevant since the Accords would only apply to the USA and its partners, why do you continue to pretend this has anything to do with the OST?
    I’m afraid I disagree. I just read an article in Ars Technica, which quotes NASA officials as saying that China will be invited to join and that at some level this is an attempt to make a better regime that China will be expected to follow. As they have an interest in space exploration, it seems natural to me that they would be interested.


    https://arstechnica.com/science/2020...s-to-the-moon/


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  9. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noclevername View Post
    What does Kim Kardashian West think of the Artemis Accords? Just as applicable!
    Do you really believe that or are you just saying that to ridicule? What do you think of the article I just posted a link to?


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    I mean, I may have posted this before, but this article from Reuter’s makes it seem like this is something controversial and that they expect reactions from Russia and China.


    https://www.reuters.com/article/us-s...-idUSKBN22H2SB


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  11. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jens View Post
    I’m afraid I disagree. I just read an article in Ars Technica, which quotes NASA officials as saying that China will be invited to join and that at some level this is an attempt to make a better regime that China will be expected to follow. As they have an interest in space exploration, it seems natural to me that they would be interested.


    https://arstechnica.com/science/2020...s-to-the-moon/


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    Yeah let's quote the relevant section of the article on China:

    In some ways, the agreements appear to be an effort to differentiate a Western model of exploration from that of China—which is not transparent about much of its exploration plans and has a mixed record of sharing data from its research activities. There is also rising concern about debris from Chinese rocket launches, including the reentry Monday of large pieces from a Long March 5B booster that came down in Africa but could just as easily have landed in the United States.

    Although China will be invited to join the Artemis Accords, NASA officials said it or any other country would have to respect the safety of people on Earth.

    “The empty core stage of the Long March 5B, weighing nearly 20 tons, was in an uncontrolled free fall along a path that carried it over Los Angeles and other densely populated areas," NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine told Ars on Friday morning. "I can think of no better example of why we need the Artemis Accords. It’s vital for the U.S. to lead and establish norms of behavior against such irresponsible activities. Space exploration should inspire hope and wonder, not fear and danger.”
    And that's not even discussing their habit of dumping rockets full of toxic chemicals all over the countryside:

    https://arstechnica.com/science/2020...-orange-cloud/

    So don't you think that maybe China should raise its standards so it could join the accord?

  12. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Garrison View Post

    So don't you think that maybe China should raise its standards so it could join the accord?
    I absolutely do think that China should raise its standards. Actually, if the accord can become something internationally important, with the membership of Russia and China, then I will be very happy. Therefore, it is something that they should be interested in, and their opinions are important, as are those of US allies in Europe who will also be asked to join the Accord. I realize this isn't really directed as you, but someone else said that the opinion of Kim Kardashian is as important. Nobody is expecting her to join, and she is not even involved in space exploration. I hope that we can agree that this is something that China should be interested in, and which hopefully will lead to improved Chinese practices.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jens View Post
    I absolutely do think that China should raise its standards. Actually, if the accord can become something internationally important, with the membership of Russia and China, then I will be very happy. Therefore, it is something that they should be interested in, and their opinions are important, as are those of US allies in Europe who will also be asked to join the Accord. I realize this isn't really directed as you, but someone else said that the opinion of Kim Kardashian is as important. Nobody is expecting her to join, and she is not even involved in space exploration. I hope that we can agree that this is something that China should be interested in, and which hopefully will lead to improved Chinese practices.
    But the context was that Kardashian's opinion matters as much as the Chinese or Russians because none of them have a veto over the Accords, which Selvarchi appears to feel Chinese and Russian should have. Of course the accords will go ahead regardless, no one really expect the Chinese to be willing to clean up their act, literally in the case of their discarded boosters, and meet the standards. So should everyone else be constrained by the fact that China or Russia refuse to meet the standards proposed in the accord.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Garrison View Post
    But the context was that Kardashian's opinion matters as much as the Chinese or Russians because none of them have a veto over the Accords, which Selvarchi appears to feel Chinese and Russian should have. Of course the accords will go ahead regardless, no one really expect the Chinese to be willing to clean up their act, literally in the case of their discarded boosters, and meet the standards. So should everyone else be constrained by the fact that China or Russia refuse to meet the standards proposed in the accord.
    Somehow then I see this kind of bipolar argument that I don't understand. It's either "they have veto power" or "their opinion is irrelevant," and there is no space for, "NASA hopes to get them on board and would like to listen to their opinions as well and make the accords into something that can actually work well"?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jens View Post
    Somehow then I see this kind of bipolar argument that I don't understand. It's either "they have veto power" or "their opinion is irrelevant," and there is no space for, "NASA hopes to get them on board and would like to listen to their opinions as well and make the accords into something that can actually work well"?
    Because there is a genuine dichotomy between 'something that will work well' and something that either China or Russia will agree to.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Garrison View Post
    Because there is a genuine dichotomy between 'something that will work well' and something that either China or Russia will agree to.
    I see. So this isn’t really about the Artemis accords but rather your feelings toward Russia and China. Fine, in that case I’m happy to let this go.
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    Deleted
    Last edited by Garrison; 2020-Sep-20 at 01:05 PM. Reason: tone

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jens View Post
    I mean, I may have posted this before, but this article from Reuter’s makes it seem like this is something controversial and that they expect reactions from Russia and China.


    https://www.reuters.com/article/us-s...-idUSKBN22H2SB


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    Courting controversy is kind of the signature move of this administration.

    The article mentions Russia as specifically not involved. No mention is made of China; the nations desired for membership were listed, and as far as I know there was no intention at all of attempts to recruit either Russia or China to the Accords.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noclevername View Post
    What does Kim Kardashian West think of the Artemis Accords? Just as applicable!
    This is already a tumultuous thread; let's not make it worse with snide comments.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noclevername View Post
    Courting controversy is kind of the signature move of this administration.

    The article mentions Russia as specifically not involved. No mention is made of China; the nations desired for membership were listed, and as far as I know there was no intention at all of attempts to recruit either Russia or China to the Accords.
    Just quoting from NASA's page on the Accords:

    With numerous countries and private sector players conducting missions and operations in cislunar space, it’s critical to establish a common set of principles to govern the civil exploration and use of outer space.

    International space agencies that join NASA in the Artemis program will do so by executing bilateral Artemis Accords agreements, which will describe a shared vision for principles, grounded in the Outer Space Treaty of 1967, to create a safe and transparent environment which facilitates exploration, science, and commercial activities for all of humanity to enjoy.
    Nothing there seems to be limiting the accords to a specific number of countries. My understanding actually is that NASA has not started negotiating the specifics with partners, but probably under the surface there are already talks ongoing. But since the first sentence mentions "numerous" countries and mentions the need for "a common set of principles to govern the civil exploration and use of outer space" it seems to me it is pretty open-ended about participation. We can speculate about whether China might eventually join and whether they could improve their practices, but since it deals with exploitation of space, it seems something that concerns China even if initially China will not be a member.
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    I'm still not sure how China got into the discussion in the first place. Despite the thread title we still have talked very little about the Accords themselves.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noclevername View Post
    I'm still not sure how China got into the discussion in the first place. Despite the thread title we still have talked very little about the Accords themselves.
    I’ve seen such different views stated about the accords and so little has happened regarding them so far, I don’t really see the point in discussing them now. If much lower cost access to space happens, and I expect it will, we’re going to need to move beyond the outer space treaty. But that will probably involve new treaties.

    I am very happy the US didn’t sign the Moon treaty, though. That really would have hampered development in space. Among the space capable nations, I think France is the only one who did. That might put a crimp in any agreement with the ESA (I don’t know how it would work given it wouldn’t affect most of the ESA member nations).

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    We started with "The Artemis Accords attempt to clarify basic principles and rule frameworks in international law for the sake of lunar activities which are led by the US, and then to influence and promote the international community to reach a consensus on the legality of space resources activities."

    What time frame are we looking at? We will not have a human landing on the moon for another 4 years. That too only if Congress releases the money. More realistically I would put it as late 2020s. Then we need to build at least one base to support the exploration of resources. Add another 5 to 10 years for that. R&D effort to build equipment to explore and then extract the resources will take ..... Having got the resources, do we refine it in place or transport to another place for the refining. This will require infrastructure to be built and operated. This will require equipment that can operate in space/moon with all the maintenance that goes with it. We are at least looking at a period of 40 to a 100 years from now to realize it.

    In the mean time we can discuses the issues related to it. Here is another op-ed from spacenews - "Celestial property rights: How we can achieve a new, commerce-fueled space age"

    https://spacenews.com/op-ed-celestia...led-space-age/

    The United States is on the verge of a new space age. Despite civil unrest and the continuing pandemic, the future for space exploration and development looks bright. Provided we successfully navigate the legal and economic challenges, the benefits for humanity can be enormous.

    Both the public and private sectors recently made bold moves. NASA announced the Artemis Accords, a series of agreements with other spacefaring nations to create shared procedures and standards for future space missions. Not long after, two NASA astronauts rode a SpaceX rocket into orbit, and aboard SpaceX’s Crew Dragon spacecraft, successfully reached the International Space Station. These events portend a new epoch of space exploration. But unlike the previous era, which was almost entirely government-driven, the era before us needs the entrepreneurial dynamism of for-profit companies. The public sector will set the vision. The private sector will achieve it.

    Yet there are significant difficulties. One of the largest hurdles is coming up with a set of legal rules for governing behavior in outer space. Especially as investors consider lucrative celestial activities like asteroid mining, we need to answer the question: who owns what in space?
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    Now we have a paper from two Canadian scientist "warning that the United States is angling to establish itself as the de facto gatekeeper of the moon and other celestial bodies". Against this we have Alex Gilbert, research fellow at the Payne Institute at the Colorado School of Mines who thinks it is a good idea.

    https://www.spacedaily.com/reports/U..._warn_999.html

    Earlier this year, NASA published a new set of rules for lunar mining and other space activities, dubbing the voluntary guidelines the "Artemis Accords."

    Aaron Boley and Michael Byers, authors of the new Science paper, argue that the Artemis Accords are part of a concerted effort by the U.S. and NASA to set a legal precedent for space-based resource extraction.

    "It's not the Artemis Accords alone that are problematic," Michael Byers, professor of global politics and international law at the University of British Columbia, told UPI in an email. "Rather, it's the ongoing and concerted U.S. diplomatic effort to promote national regulation of space mining and to proceed with resource extraction before a multilateral agreement has been negotiated."
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    So, yet another political opinion piece. Yawn.

    Do any posters have any meat, or are we resigned to getting the bones now?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noclevername View Post
    So, yet another political opinion piece. Yawn.
    That’s what I was referring to back here:

    https://forum.cosmoquest.org/showthr...21#post2520221

    about how I’ve seen wildly different opinions on them.

    Do any posters have any meat, or are we resigned to getting the bones now?
    As a matter of fact, there has just been a real change. From this article:

    https://arstechnica.com/science/2020...ven-countries/

    Quoting:

    On Tuesday, during the virtual meeting of the International Astronautical Foundation, the space agency signed "accords" with seven other countries that will establish norms for cooperation among nations to explore the Moon, Mars, and other destinations in the Solar System.

    Signing the Artemis Accords alongside the United States were Australia, Canada, Japan, Luxembourg, Italy, the United Kingdom, and the United Arab Emirates. Essentially, partner nations agreed to 10 basic norms as part of their space activities, such as operating transparently and releasing scientific data.
    So something is actually happening with the Artemis Accords and they will start to have some real world effects.

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    Project Artemis: UK signs up to Nasa's Moon exploration principles https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-54530361


    America, which devised the accords, has signed them, followed by the UK, Japan, Australia, Canada, Italy, Luxembourg and UAE. More countries are certain to follow....

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    Quote Originally Posted by Van Rijn View Post
    As a matter of fact, there has just been a real change. From this article:

    https://arstechnica.com/science/2020...ven-countries/

    So something is actually happening with the Artemis Accords and they will start to have some real world effects.
    Ah! That's more like it. Something substantial to discuss.
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  29. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by Swift View Post
    This is already a tumultuous thread; let's not make it worse with snide comments.
    Quote Originally Posted by Noclevername View Post
    So, yet another political opinion piece. Yawn.

    Do any posters have any meat, or are we resigned to getting the bones now?
    Apparently my earlier warning wasn't clear. Maybe an infraction will help clarify things.
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    Quote Originally Posted by DavidLondon View Post
    Project Artemis: UK signs up to Nasa's Moon exploration principles https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-54530361


    America, which devised the accords, has signed them, followed by the UK, Japan, Australia, Canada, Italy, Luxembourg and UAE. More countries are certain to follow....
    Makes sense, a mix of countries already heavily involved with NASA and countries with ambitions to build up their space industries. I think the problem with the Russians is that as one of the two original pioneering space nations they think should still be entitled to special treatment and equal status with NASA, even as the rise of other players and the decline of their own program doesn't really justify such treatment in the 2020s.

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