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    Imagine that you are pioneering a new frontier. You are one of the first inhabitants in a foreign area, braving unknown conditions and making incredible discoveries about a land few others have seen. Now imagine the place you are pioneering is in space.

    The colonization of the Moon and Mars has long been a topic of international discussion. Bringing humans to these outlying territories would create opportunities for the human race to diversify and expand. The question that remains, however, is who should control the rights to these lands in space?

    In 1967, several nations met to discuss the “Treaty On Principles Governing the Activities of States in the Exploration and Use of Outer Space, Including the Moon and Other Celestial Bodies,” more commonly known as the “Outer Space Treaty.” According to this treaty, no one nation can claim sovereignty on space territories, meaning no nation can claim or grant land in outer space. The former Union of Soviet Socialist Republic (USSR) sought to ban private activity in space as well, but this idea was not present in the finalized treaty due to strong objections from the United States.

    This omission means that private companies can claim ownership of land on the Moon or Mars. Companies can purchase the land, then sell it to settlers. Individual nations would then have to decide whether or not to accept the community’s property deeds in their courts of law. The U.S. has been pushing a proposal that encourages government bodies to recognize private companies’ land claims in the hopes that other countries will follow our lead, resulting in a new and improved space land use treaty.

    One man in 1980 actually said he claimed the moon and has been selling certificates representing one-acre pieces of land to more than a million people. Through these sales, he has generated more than $16 million. The only problem is that no government currently recognizes the property rights since he has never landed on the surface of the Moon.

    To encourage private companies to spend the money to get to the Moon and Mars, it is proposed that the first group to settle and use land on these bodies get the largest piece of land. The first group on the Moon is projected to receive a piece of land the size of Alaska, while the first group on Mars will get a piece of land that would fit six states the size of Alaska. This would allow the company to sell the land they don’t need or want to cover the cost of reaching the Moon or Mars. Every group after the original settlers would get smaller pieces of land under this proposal.

    Who should control the land on the Moon and Mars? How much land should they be able to claim? How much power should the government have in this process? Share your opinions on the Message Board.

     
    Surface of Mars. Image courtesy NASA/JPL.
     
    The Moon. Image courtesy NASA.

    AuthorComment
    Brittany
    Guest Student

    Woodriver
    Fairbanks, Alaska
    1/18/2006 8:39:57 AM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    Its very cool, about what you're doing. And very very interesting!!!Thankyou!!!
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 10:44:50 AM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    this was a very informative article and I really enjoyed it
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 12:58:58 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    I think that they should both share the planet one side gets half and the other gets the other half this way they have the same amount of power.
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 12:59:25 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    i think no one should contral nothing evry one can go evrey were
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 12:59:41 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    I think that they should divide the land on the moon and mars equally and then let any state that wants to be in charge should be in charge.
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 1:00:03 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    I think that the first people to any planet or moon should call it "theres". Since we were the first people it should be ours. If any other countries had been to anyother thing in space, i think they should control it. But if people from the united states and people from canada combine together they should put both flags on where ever they are.
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 1:00:13 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    I think the powerful contries should control the moon and mars.
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 1:00:31 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    I think the people that should control the Moon and Mars are the people that get there first. If the USA gets there first then we should get it. If a place like Puerto Rico gets there first then they should get to own the land.Or if some one pays the 16 million dollars first then they get the land but yu never know you might not even need the lad in the future!
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 1:00:48 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    I think that the people who land on the planet first on the spacific peice of land be able to own that land. So if like we land on mars we should be able to own the peice of land we landed on, and say china landed on that same planet but a different part they should be able to own that planet. One way you should be able to tell is if you put your flag on the spot so they know its your planet.
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 1:00:59 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    I dont know why people are fighting over it but if they buy it then they can sell it but i dont know why they are fighting over it
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 1:01:18 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    I think whoever gets to the planet/moon first should control all of that land. The government should have a vote on either. The vote will be on which country gets the planet/moon, or whoever gets there owns it.
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 1:01:42 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    I dont think any one should control it because how are you suppose to live in outer space when u cant even breathe out there. We need oxegen and other gases to survive on the moon or on mars. we would die if we ever stayed on one of them because of the coldness and gas. nobody should own it because whats the point of buying land there if u cant even live there. well thats my opinion.
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 1:01:54 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    I think who ever landed on the Moon, or discovered Mars should own it. They should be able to own a little more than half of it. The govenment should have only some control.
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 1:02:09 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    everyone should be able to control land on mars and on the moon only if they land on it and they can sell the land they have and the first person to land on that planet or moon should be able to get the biggest pieace of land threr is
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 1:02:26 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    I think that the planets should just be left alone, and no human should try to claim land on certain planets. Our Solar System, I think, can still be used to collect data from space so we know in the near future of what could happen like if a solar eclipse occurs in space.
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 1:03:28 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    I think that who ever dicoverd mars and landed on it or who ever landed on the moon should own it because they were the one to discover the mars so they shpuld have half of it or more.
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 1:03:49 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    I think all of the great nations should control mars and the the moon. It was an iterestesting article. Its a sham the U.S.A can't control it all. But if all of the nations cotrol mars and the moon and we work together we have a better chane of succeding in our mission. Also if we all work together what ever we want to do on that planet will go much faster.
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 1:04:13 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    I think that they should split the land together.Or if you donjt solve it nobody gets that peice of land.
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 1:04:30 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    I think that the person that found the land should keep it because they have gone through the process of getting it.
    I think the government should own three feet of the land because they had nothing to do with it or founding it. ''They should be happy they got that from me''! ''They should have no power at all''.



    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 1:05:04 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    I think nobody should own land on Mars or the Moon until we can live on other planets.Then we can worry about who owns land in space.

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