This article provides an overview of current developments in the commercial space industry and touches upon unsettled legal issues in space law and space property rights in particular. The article provides an analysis of the security risks, environmental hazards, and economic opportunities associated with the development of the commercial space industry. Part II gives an overview of past and present commercial and nation-state space development activities. Part III addresses the reasons underlying the ambiguity regarding space property rights in the major source of space law, the Outer Space Treaty of 1967, and proposes that the international community reconsider the benefits of a public trust concept. Part IV examines the policy considerations of (1) safety and security; (2) economic justice; and (3) interplanetary rights in global space law development. Part V briefly synthesizes the facts, laws, and policy considerations discussed in this article to highlight the common goals of nation-states, commercial actors, and humanity in the global space industry development. Finally, Part VI concludes with the observation that the choices we make in global space law development today can impact the future of the human race.
"Law and Policy in the Global Space Industry's Lift-Off,"
Barry Law Review: Vol. 19
, Article 7.
Available at: http://lawpublications.barry.edu/barrylrev/vol19/iss1/7