I recently had the pleasure of attending the Iredell Law Conference at Lancaster University to present a paper, ‘Beyond the horizon: law, exception and conflict in outer space’. In my paper, I spoke about law and warfare in outer space, and what I see as a fundamental problem in the operation of law, and the exercise of sovereignty in outer space.
After my presentation one of the delegates posed the question, well what about Antarctica and colonies at the bottom of the sea? According to current practice, international law does apply in both of these situations, so doesn’t that set a precedent for law on the Moon?
My response to this question was very definitely a ‘no’, however I didn’t have time to expand on my argument. In this blog, I hope to discuss some of the issues surrounding law and sovereignty in outer space, and the problem of just how you impose sovereign rule on a colony that could advance many decades in the time it takes for a message to reach it… Continue reading