International Institute of Space Law

Article

An International Trust Model to Deal with the New Space Era

From the “De Iure Condito” Regime to a “De Iure Condendo” System for Outer Space

Authors Ivan Fino
Author's information

Ivan Fino
Ivan Fino, Università degli Studi di Torino, Facoltà di Giurisprudenza; ivan.fino@edu.unito.it.
  • Abstract

      Considering the acceleration of climate change, in the future outer space might be our last Noah’s Ark. Humans must now look to space as an opportunity to support growing resource requirements. Unfortunately, the existing international legal framework discourages investments in the space economy. Once an enterprise invests in developing a mining site, it cannot claim any ownership because of the non-appropriation principle of Article 2, Outer Space Treaty (OST); thus, other entities could legally access and exploit the same resource without any participation in the initial financial investment. Taking this into consideration, the question arises, which legal regime could ensure effective allocation of resources? The aim of this research is to develop a new legal model for outer space, considering the weak points of the current regime and the needs of the new space economy. Food for thought will be drawn from the hypothetical adoption of various international environments’ legal framework. The proposed model would take the best features of these legal regimes and its structure would be based on a mix between a classical legal trust model and a public trust model.

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