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New bill to create national park on the Moon


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#1    Saru

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Posted 11 July 2013 - 12:38 PM

A new US bill is set to preserve the Apollo landing sites due to their historical significance.

Space.com said:

Called the Apollo Lunar Landing Legacy Act, the bill was introduced Monday (July 8) by Rep. Donna Edwards of (D-Md. ) and was co-sponsored by Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-Texas).

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#2    Waspie_Dwarf

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Posted 11 July 2013 - 01:01 PM

Whilst I totally agree that the Apollo sites should be preserved (as should the landing sites of Russian probes), this bill in the most part is totally meaningless. The US Government, by international law, can not lay claim to the moon or any part of it, it can not, therefore exert any rights over the landing sites. Therefore the US would be totally unable to enforce this Law on non-US nationals (and whilst I don't claim to know anything about US Law I would think that a few lawyers would get very rich if they tried to enforce it on US nationals).

The equipment left on the moon is already protected by international law, as it remains the property of the US Government.

The part of the Bill that does make sense is this part:

Quote

The bill also calls for the heads of the Department of the Interior and NASA to "submit the Apollo 11 lunar landing site to the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) for designation as a World Heritage Site" no later than one year after the park's establishment.

Getting historic landing sites recognised as World Heritage Sites is a good idea. Not just Apollo 11, but all of the Apollo sites, the Soviet landing sites and indeed landing sites on Mars too.

The protection these sites need and deserve can not come from a unilateral declaration from the US Government, however well meaning, but must be through international cooperation. As it says on the plaque attached to the leg of the Apollo 11 Lunar Module Descent Stage "... for all Mankind".

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#3    joc

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Posted 11 July 2013 - 01:22 PM

All one really needs to know about the bill:

Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-Texas)


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#4    Silver Surfer

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Posted 11 July 2013 - 01:29 PM

How about an international park for human achievement? Does everything have to be America *&%$ yea!
Lets not forget that they got the rocket that takes people to the moon with help from the a Nazi war criminal and 1000 other odd Nazi scientists they pardoned and brought into America.. but hey.. Whatever!! I guess they don't call us the human RACE for nothing.


#5    Timmeh

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Posted 11 July 2013 - 01:36 PM

All I can say to that is best of luck enforcing that if it passes USA. I don't think it will for some reason.


#6    Waspie_Dwarf

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Posted 11 July 2013 - 01:41 PM

View Postjoc, on 11 July 2013 - 01:22 PM, said:

All one really needs to know about the bill:

Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-Texas)
Which means nothing to those of us the aren't American and take little notice of US politics.

"Space is big. Really big. You just won't believe how vastly, hugely, mind-boggingly big it is. I mean, you may think it's a long way down the street to the chemist, but that's just peanuts to space." - The Hitch-Hikers Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams 1952 - 2001

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#7    Asadora

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Posted 11 July 2013 - 01:49 PM

I was surprised after I read the original post. I can appericate the idea to preserve human history on the moon. Regardless of which nation wants to 'own' the moon, or what have you, it's human history that should be preserved, not one country's national history. Beyond our Earth, what matters is that we are Human. I don't think that anyone or thing outside of our planet would even understand our concept of nationality.

Anyway, before I go off on a tangent: What I would like to point out:

After reading the Outer Space Treaty of 1967 which is located here: http://en.wikisource..._Treaty_of_1967

This section states:
"The exploration and use of outer space, including the moon and other celestial bodies, shall be carried out for the benefit and in the interests of all countries, irrespective of their degree of economic or scientific development, and shall be the province of all mankind.

Outer space, including the moon and other celestial bodies, shall be free for exploration and use by all States without discrimination of any kind, on a basis of equality and in accordance with international law, and there shall be free access to all areas of celestial bodies."

The only way I do see the US loopholing this is that the above doesn't say anything about 'part' of the Moon.

Certainly food for thought!

Kind Regards :)

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#8    Waspie_Dwarf

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Posted 11 July 2013 - 01:50 PM

View PostSilver Surfer, on 11 July 2013 - 01:29 PM, said:

How about an international park for human achievement? Does everything have to be America *&%$ yea!
Well Apollo WAS a US project and it DID beat the Soviet Union, so what is the problem with the US taking pride in one of mankinds greatest achievements. If it had been the Union Flag planted on the Moon I'd be shouting about it.

View PostSilver Surfer, on 11 July 2013 - 01:29 PM, said:

Lets not forget that they got the rocket that takes people to the moon with help from the a Nazi war criminal and 1000 other odd Nazi scientists they pardoned and brought into America.. but hey.. Whatever!!
A massive over simplification and distortion showing very little comprehension of the reality... but hey,, Whatever!!

View PostSilver Surfer, on 11 July 2013 - 01:29 PM, said:

I guess they don't call us the human RACE for nothing.
I don't get the relevance of this comment at all.

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#9    Waspie_Dwarf

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Posted 11 July 2013 - 02:02 PM

View PostAsadora, on 11 July 2013 - 01:49 PM, said:

The only way I do see the US loopholing this is that the above doesn't say anything about 'part' of the Moon.

Article II states:

Quote

Outer space, including the moon and other celestial bodies, is not subject to national appropriation by claim of sovereignty, by means of use or occupation, or by any other means.

As this includes everything outside of the Earth it means that no nation can claim sovereignty over any part of any celestial object including the Moon, so there is no loophole there.

As I said in my original post though, the US DOES retain ownership of the Apollo equipment left on the Moon. Article VIII states:

Quote

A State Party to the Treaty on whose registry an object launched into outer space is carried shall retain jurisdiction and control over such object, and over any personnel thereof, while in outer space or on a celestial body. Ownership of objects launched into outer space, including objects landed or constructed on a celestial body, and of their component parts, is not affected by their presence in outer space or on a celestial body or by their return to the Earth. Such objects or component parts found beyond the limits of the State Party of the Treaty on whose registry they are carried shall be returned to that State Party, which shall, upon request, furnish identifying data prior to their return.


"Space is big. Really big. You just won't believe how vastly, hugely, mind-boggingly big it is. I mean, you may think it's a long way down the street to the chemist, but that's just peanuts to space." - The Hitch-Hikers Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams 1952 - 2001

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#10    Asadora

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Posted 11 July 2013 - 02:07 PM

Here is the actual purposed bill:
http://beta.congress...113hr2617ih.pdf  (it's a PDF file - havn't linked a pdf before, so hope it works) If it doesn't Google will.

What I find interesting is how it is titled:

To establish the Apollo Lunar Landing Sites National Historical Park on
the Moon, and for other purposes.

"...and for other purposes."
Mmm... let's see... what might them other purposes be. I do wonder!

Kind Regards :)

"From time to time there appear on the face of the earth men of rare and consummate excellence, who dazzle us by their virtue, and whose outstanding qualities shed a stupendous light. Like those extraordinary stars of whose origins we are ignorant, and of whose fate, once they have vanished, we know even less, such men have neither forebears nor descendants: they are the whole of their race."  -- Jean de la Bruyere 1645-1696.

#11    Timmeh

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Posted 11 July 2013 - 02:38 PM

View PostAsadora, on 11 July 2013 - 02:07 PM, said:

for other purposes.

"...and for other purposes."
Mmm... let's see... what might them other purposes be. I do wonder!

Kind Regards :)
possibly for the creation of a monument


#12    Asadora

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Posted 11 July 2013 - 02:42 PM

View PostTimmeh, on 11 July 2013 - 02:38 PM, said:

possibly for the creation of a monument

Wonder if they'll also charge an admission fee. What about parking? ;)

"From time to time there appear on the face of the earth men of rare and consummate excellence, who dazzle us by their virtue, and whose outstanding qualities shed a stupendous light. Like those extraordinary stars of whose origins we are ignorant, and of whose fate, once they have vanished, we know even less, such men have neither forebears nor descendants: they are the whole of their race."  -- Jean de la Bruyere 1645-1696.

#13    Timmeh

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Posted 11 July 2013 - 02:52 PM

View PostAsadora, on 11 July 2013 - 02:42 PM, said:

Wonder if they'll also charge an admission fee. What about parking? ;)
well in international law if I'm understanding it right they would own the structure but not the territory so in theory they could.


#14    keithisco

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Posted 11 July 2013 - 02:53 PM

absolutely straightforward.. The USA retains ownership of the various artifacts left on the Moon (as described in the Treaty of 1967) but CANNOT have control of a "National Historical Park" to include all areas where exploration has been involved.

Simply: The USA would be in breach of the Treaty if it attempts to apportion any part of the Moon to a Park, that is under exclusive control by the USA.

What would be sensible is to have dialogue in the UN where the Treaty could be varied to allow this.


#15    Waspie_Dwarf

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Posted 11 July 2013 - 03:14 PM

View Postkeithisco, on 11 July 2013 - 02:53 PM, said:

What would be sensible is to have dialogue in the UN where the Treaty could be varied to allow this.

I don't think you would even need to amend the treaty. The setting up of UN recognised, "Outer Space Sites of Importance to Humanity" (not a very catchy name but the best I could come up with on the spur of the moment) could protect such sites whilst still preserving the Outer Space Treaty.

"Space is big. Really big. You just won't believe how vastly, hugely, mind-boggingly big it is. I mean, you may think it's a long way down the street to the chemist, but that's just peanuts to space." - The Hitch-Hikers Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams 1952 - 2001

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