The International Politics Of The Moon


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A presentation to help create awareness about Moon politics and "terraformation" of the Moon.

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The International Politics Of The Moon

  1. 1. The International Politics of the Moon A Multi-disciplinary Perspective upon Astro-politics Ferdie Lochner 26 November 2008
  2. 2. Contents <ul><li>Astro-terminology. </li></ul><ul><li>Why the interest? </li></ul><ul><li>The first Moon race. </li></ul><ul><li>General overview: politics of frontiers and frontier politics. </li></ul><ul><li>What drives Man to frontier zones? </li></ul><ul><li>The Moon: allures and attractions. </li></ul><ul><li>Moon sovereignty: the right questions. </li></ul><ul><li>Sovereignty and international space treaties. </li></ul><ul><li>Technology push towards the Moon. </li></ul><ul><li>A taxonomy of technologies for/from space. </li></ul><ul><li>Moon co-opetition: shades of grey. </li></ul><ul><li>The second Moon race. </li></ul><ul><li>A hypothesis for terra-formation of Moon. </li></ul><ul><li>Further reading – links. </li></ul><ul><li>Conclusion: Quo Vadis? </li></ul>
  3. 3. Astro-terminology <ul><li>Astro-environmentalism, eco-critics and astro-critics. </li></ul><ul><li>Space wilderness. </li></ul><ul><li>From geopolitics to astro-politics. </li></ul><ul><li>Terra-forming and terra-formation. </li></ul><ul><li>From Greenpeace to Greenspace and Spacepeace. </li></ul><ul><li>Exo-biology, extremophiles and astro-biology. </li></ul><ul><li>Bio-burden, extra-terrestrial contamination and backwards contamination. </li></ul><ul><li>Habots and astro-geologists. </li></ul><ul><li>Space militarization. </li></ul><ul><li>From astronaut to taikonaut. </li></ul>
  4. 4. Why the interest? <ul><li>Keeping space surrounding earth clear of pollution, debris and damage caused by fuel for space travels. </li></ul><ul><li>Remembering lessons of conservation and reservation and applying them to frontier of space. </li></ul><ul><li>Drive to treat space as the wilderness it is. </li></ul><ul><li>Help evolution of legal, political and ethical regime for human endeavour in space wilderness. </li></ul><ul><li>Drive towards stronger regulation and control of space wilderness by UN Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space </li></ul><ul><li>[ ] </li></ul><ul><li>Why not??? </li></ul>
  5. 5. The first Moon Race <ul><li>1895: Konstantin Tsiolkovskiy proposes rocket-propelled spaceship. </li></ul><ul><li>1905: Spaceship in novel &quot;The First Men in the Moon&quot; by H. G. Wells travels to Moon by means of anti-gravity material. </li></ul><ul><li>1957: Oct. 4: The R-7 rocket launched the world's first artificial satellite - Sputnik-1. </li></ul><ul><li>1961: April 12: Yuri Gagarin completes world's first manned spaceflight on board the Vostok spacecraft. </li></ul><ul><li>1968: Dec. 21-27: Apollo-8 with crew of three completes the world's first manned mission around the Moon. </li></ul><ul><li>1969: July 16-24: The Apollo-11 astronauts land on the Moon’s equator. Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin become first human beings to step onto the Moon’s surface. </li></ul><ul><li>1972: Dec. 7-19: Apollo-17 becomes the 6th and last expedition to visit the Moon in the 20th century. </li></ul>
  6. 6. General overview: politics of frontiers and frontier politics <ul><li>War and politics by proxy – frontiers as laboratory for international political experiments. </li></ul><ul><li>Frontiers serving as decoy and fiscal costs “hidden” behind national prestige. </li></ul><ul><li>Electronic media omnipresence brings new dynamics into frontiers discourse - see roles of so-called astro-activists and Spacepeace. </li></ul><ul><li>Frontier politics - frontier men as pressure groups for “refreshment stations” en route to Mars. </li></ul><ul><li>Moon as new proxy for superpower confrontation in space. </li></ul>
  7. 7. What drives Man to frontier zones? <ul><li>International political prestige - “Footprints and flagpoles sentiment” – Buzz Aldrin. </li></ul><ul><li>Geopolitical chess game extended as astro-politics to lunar domain. </li></ul><ul><li>Entrepreneurship - Bert Rutan of SpaceShipOne wins X prize . </li></ul><ul><li>Schumpeter’s creative destruction, innovation cycles and technology pull and push forces. </li></ul><ul><li>Over-population, conspicuous spending and resources scarcity. </li></ul><ul><li>Wanderlust and allure of adventure. </li></ul>
  8. 8. The Moon: allures and attractions <ul><li>Leaving out Quasi-Satellites, the Moon is the only satellite to Mother Earth. </li></ul><ul><li>Nearest celestial body to earth and only one where mankind has landed. </li></ul><ul><li>Moon as celestial location for tourism and space bases. </li></ul><ul><li>Allure of understanding astro-geology. </li></ul><ul><li>Lunar surface as repository of high premium minerals. </li></ul><ul><li>Pristine space wilderness. </li></ul>
  9. 9. Moon sovereignty: the right questions <ul><li>Can the Moon be claimed for “King and Country”? </li></ul><ul><li>Can sovereign states put military installations on the Moon, and can the Moon be fortified? </li></ul><ul><li>Are corporations allowed to expropriate Moon resources? </li></ul><ul><li>Are corporations or individuals allowed to lay claim to Moon real estate? </li></ul><ul><li>Are astronauts allowed to mine the Moon? </li></ul><ul><li>Are we ready to promote Moon and space neutrality? </li></ul>
  10. 10. Sovereignty and international space treaties <ul><li>International Law and the “tyranny” of internal over external sovereignty. </li></ul><ul><li>Outer Space Treaty of 1967 ratified by 67 members of United Nations. Article II states that Moon and other celestial bodies is not subject to claims of sovereignty, nor military installations. </li></ul><ul><li>Moon Treaty of 1979 ratified by only 13 members of UN. Explicitly forbids private property rights on the Moon. Not ratified by USA. </li></ul><ul><li>Role of UN Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space. </li></ul>
  11. 11. Technology push towards the Moon <ul><li>Technology as instrument in International Politics. </li></ul><ul><li>Schumpeter and creative destruction as impetus into innovation cycles. </li></ul><ul><li>Carlota Perez as New Schumpeterian and techno-economic cycles. </li></ul><ul><li>Technology of political control versus Technologies of War and role of military industrial complex. </li></ul><ul><li>Technology as push factor versus technology as space outcome. </li></ul>
  12. 12. A taxonomy of technologies for/from space Output Matter Energy Information Action Process Electrolysis (M) Sun tracking solar array (S) Memory short stacking (A) Transport SpaceOne derivative (P) Heat pipe technology (A) Broadcast transmitter (S) Store Freeze Dry technology (M) Flywheel energy storage (S) Solid state drive (M) M - Basic material A - Simple product performing single function as assembly S - Complex collection of assemblies into a system P - Platform carrier for other systems Source: After Van Wyk, R.J. 2004: Technology: A unifying Code. (
  13. 13. Moon co-opetition: shades of gray <ul><li>Space and lunar co-operation versus earth competition. </li></ul><ul><li>Cost of going alone not sustainable, preserve of select few, i.e. India, China, Russia and USA. </li></ul><ul><li>International Space Station as manifestation of extra-ideological space co-operation. </li></ul><ul><li>European space agency serving as extension of economic co-operation in EU. </li></ul><ul><li>Russian space agency first to commercialize and to serve as avenue for space travel to diverse clientele. </li></ul>
  14. 14. The second Moon Race <ul><li>September 2007 Japan sends the Kaguya spacecraft to explore Moon. </li></ul><ul><li>September 2007 China sends Chang'e 1 as first lunar orbiter and in September 2008 sends Shenzhou VII for first Chinese space walk as forerunner of Chinese space station for 2010. </li></ul><ul><li>April 2008 India launches 10 satellites into orbit, also serves as launch pad for Belgium, Germany, Korea, Japan and France. October 2008 launches Chandrayaan-1 in to help Moon mapping. </li></ul><ul><li>NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter destined for 3D mapping of Moon from March 2009 onwards. </li></ul><ul><li>Commercial race - Google lunar X prize for 31 December 2012 ($20 million). </li></ul>
  15. 15. A hypothesis for terra-formation of Moon Source: Author’s own, 2008
  16. 16. Further reading - links <ul><li> - journal. </li></ul><ul><li> - blog. </li></ul><ul><li> - society. </li></ul><ul><li> - academic book. </li></ul><ul><li> - NASA fact page on Moon missions. </li></ul><ul><li> - NASA’s Phoenix finds ice on Mars. </li></ul>
  17. 17. Conclusions: Quo vadis? <ul><li>What indeed is new about astro-politics? </li></ul><ul><li>What indeed is new to astro-politics? </li></ul><ul><li>What is the role of the Internet in education earth population about the Moon as a pristine wilderness? </li></ul><ul><li>What are our responses to observations about astro-politics? </li></ul><ul><li>How do we balance our intellectual curiosity, adventurous spirit, resource consumption and political perspectives to preserve and conserve the Moon and other celestial bodies? </li></ul><ul><li>Are we ready to promote Moon conservation, like we do Table Mountain, Kruger, Kalahari, Madikwe, and the Namib? </li></ul>