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Guest: Laura Montgomery; Topics: FAA, Dept. of Commerce, NOAA regulatory issues, commercial space, space property rights, multi-lateral treaties vs. federal law, planetary protection & more. Please direct all comments and questions regarding specific Space Show programs & guest(s) to the Space Show blog which is part of archived program on our website, www.thespaceshow.com. Comments and questions should be relevant to the specific Space Show program. Written Transcripts of Space Show programs are a violation of our copyright and are not permitted without prior written consent, even if for your own use. We do not permit the commercial use of Space Show programs or any part thereof, nor do we permit editing, YouTube clips, or clips placed on other private channels & websites. Space Show programs can be quoted, but the quote must be cited or referenced using the proper citation format. Contact The Space Show for further information. In addition, please remember that your Amazon purchases can help support The Space Show/OGLF. See www.onegiantleapfoundation.org/amazon.htm.
We welcomed back Laura Montgomery for this one segment 62 minute space policy and law discussion on current and trending issues. Please note that I have posted a few notes on behalf of our guest on the blog with URLs that you should check out that Laura mentioned during our discussion. Also, you can read Laura's posts and other things on her site and blog: http://groundbasedspacematters.com.
We started our discussion talking about SPD 2 and NOAA regulatory issues. As you will hear, the proposed changes are important you may want to comment on them. Our guest provided us with instructions on how to comment with a deadline of August 28. Ms. Montgomery also mentioned the Federal Registry at www.federalregister.gov. The NOAA information can be found at www.federalregister.gov/documents/search?conditions%5Bterm%5D=NOAA#. Ms. Montgomery outlined NOAA concerns and more. Check it out and listen carefully to what our guest said on this topic.
Next, we talked about the House passage of the American Space Commerce Free Enterprise Act which has yet to be discussed in the Senate. In discussing what the Senate may do with the House bill, it seems that the Senate may pass its own version of the legislation, then the bills would have to be compromised and merged together. As I understand it, no date has been set for the Senate to consider this legislation.
Space property rights were an issue as I wanted to ask our guest about the concept Rand Simberg put forth on his last Space Show program regarding a way to side step the OST and have select nations enter into multi-lateral treaties to establish space property rights. Laura said this was a viable direction to take but don't miss all of what she said on the topic. We talked about possible opposition, US federal law, enforcement, & alternatives to treaty law. Part of what our guest focused on was the use and acceptance of common law. One listener asked Laura about the impact of this plan were space to be identified as a global common. This opened up an entirely different discussion though she said it was not U.S. policy to identify space as a global commons. Again, don't miss what our guest had to say on the global commons issue.
The Moon Treaty came up but our guest said it was not applicable to those that had not signed it. This included most nations of the world including the US and Russia. Presidential Executive orders were talked about plus when I asked Laura just how essential space property rights were to full development and use of commercial space, she said they were very important and vital.
Our next topic focused on developing a new branch of the military as a U.S. Space Force. Several issues and factors in support of the new military branch were brought up but our guest was not overly excited about the prospects. Listen to what she said about the space force idea plus the emails that I read on air from listeners on this topic.
As we were nearing the end of the program, I asked about what appears to be our new planetary protection policy per the Scientific American article by the new director of that NASA office, Dr. Lisa Pratt. The link to the paper and a few articles by our guest on the subject have been posted on the blog. That said, we had quite the discussion on this including the fact that not everyone believes Article 9 of the OST applies to private space actors. There was also quite a discussion on Article 9 and the privates. At one point, she suggested privates were voluntarily cooperating with the COSPAR Guideline. This was a very interesting discussion but note the use of the word voluntarily. We then had more to say on the House and Senate versions of the American Space Commerce Free Enterprise Act. We talked spaceflight hardware sterilization and pending new research by Dr. George Fox of the University of Houston.
The last question and topic for the day came from Jill who wanted to know that if the private company SST's being developed are actually developed and enter the commercial marketplace, what would the FAA have to modify or change to make it legal to fly supersonic across the U.S. Don't miss what our guest had to say on this subject.
Please post your comments/questions for Ms. Montgomery on The Space Show blog for this show. You can reach our guest through her website or me.