Access and Benefit Sharing in International Law
- Intellectual Property and the Environment series
Chapter 3: Outer space and planetary objects
When the Soviet Union eventually launched Sputnick 1 on 4 October 1957 the UN responded soon afterwards with a resolution adopted by the General Assembly that ‘the sending of objects through outer space should be exclusively for peaceful and scientific purposes’. This was perhaps a surprising approach at the time as previous agreements addressing the space above land and water with the advent of sustained balloon and aeroplane flight expressly recognised Nation State sovereignty of the airspace over that state’s lands and waters. There was little question or doubt then that a state’s sovereignty extended to the airspaces used by balloons and aeroplanes in the same way a state might regulate other activities within its territory. With the advent of space flight in the regions above the reach of balloons and aeroplanes, and recognition of this as a region beyond state sovereignty, another agreement was required. This also reflected concern about the threat of war conducted in space between the nuclear armed United States and the Soviet Union as the then superpowers. In this context the development of outer space free of sovereignty claims was a means of limiting a further escalation of the cold war into space.
You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.
Elgaronline requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals. Please login through your library system or with your personal username and password on the homepage.
Non-subscribers can freely search the site, view abstracts/ extracts and download selected front matter and introductory chapters for personal use.
Your library may not have purchased all subject areas. If you are authenticated and think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.