Canada urged not to endorse U.S. approach to space mining – by Steven Chase (Globe and Mail – April 20, 2020)

The Canadian government is being urged not to endorse a U.S. approach to mining in space that experts warn could result in countries setting their own rules for extraterrestrial resource extraction.

Seven Canadian international space policy and law experts have written a letter to Foreign Affairs Minister François-Philippe Champagne asking Canada instead to back the development of a multilateral treaty among as many countries as possible to set uniform rules.

They’re responding to an executive order signed April 6 by U.S. President Donald Trump that rejects the idea of outer space as an asset that is outside of national jurisdiction.

“Outer space is a legally and physically unique domain of human activity, and the United States does not view it as a global commons,” the Trump executive order states.

The Canadian experts say space must be regulated internationally – similarly to Antarctica or the world’s seabeds – and all countries, include non-space-faring ones, get a say in decision-making.

For the rest of this article: