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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
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 1:05:22 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    i think thaat nobody should control the Moon or Mars because does any body own earth NO so why should any one women or man own another planet that they can't even live on,the whole world should beable to view the other planets without having to ask anybody. I have more to say but i don't have enough time!
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 1:05:32 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    I thought this article was full of interesting information. It was really neat!!! I don't really like science but I really liked this article.
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 1:05:42 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.
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 1:05:50 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    I liked this article because it was informative!
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 1:55:51 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    i think no one should on mars or moon becuase we will never live on the moon or mars so it realy does not matter.
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 1:57:19 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    I think they both should share the land.
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 1:57:46 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    I think that the people who do the pioneering control the land on mars and the moon
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 1:58:48 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    I think that no one person should own eny land on them. I would not buy eny land because what would you do you can not live there.
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 1:58:59 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    i think amarica should have the moon because they are more carefull about the moon than all they others and on mars.
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 1:59:09 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    I think no one should control the land on Mars and the moon becuase they will be alot of fighting against the countries that want the land.
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 1:59:19 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    I think nobody should control the land on mars and the moon because i think they won't have any big problems.
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 1:59:29 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    no one shaould control the land on mars and the moon.it should be evertones.
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 1:59:39 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    the people who did the pioneering controled the land on mars and the moon
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 2:00:11 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    the govner
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 2:00:38 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    I really don't know if any body could control the land on Mars, and the moon.Also I have no idea who might control our moon, and our planet Mars.
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 2:00:51 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    I think the stronger state should have control of mars and
    the moon and i think the person that found the land should
    keep it because they have gone through the process of getting it.
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 2:01:02 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    I think that they should share it. With out fighting over who gets what planet.
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 2:01:48 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    I think that the Russians should get the land on the Moon. And I also think they should the land because they were the first to discover the Moon, and Hershal should get Mars because that person discovered it. The man who sold acres on the Moon who didn't own the Moon should get nothing, Because you can't sell land that you don't own and it is illegal to do that.
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 2:01:56 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    I think Russia should get Mars and the USA should get the moon.
    Dena Dinos
    Teacher

    Memorial Intermediate
    Vineland, New Jersey
    4/7/2006 2:02:06 PM
    Re: Who Should Control The Land On Mars And The Moon?
    MR.Delente should land on mars and themoon

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