On-Orbit Jurisdiction, including link to Property Rights Issues and Other New Space Activities, the Focus of 7th Annual Univ. of Nebraska Washington, DC Space Law Conference

I thought I would share the agenda for Univ. of Nebraska’s 7th Annual Washington D.C. Space Law Conference (registration is free at http://law.unl.edu/dc-conferences/ but spaces are limited):

University of Nebraska
7th Annual Washington, D.C. Space Law Conference
November 3, 2014
National Press Club
529 14th St. NW, 13th Floor
Washington, DC 20045

Public Panels: On-Orbit Jurisdiction – Challenges and Opportunities

Currently, the FAA only has express regulatory authority to license launches and re-entries but not on-orbit or in-space activities. While some have argued FAA or other federal agencies have implied or inherent authority to so regulate, agencies are unlikely to act based on these types of arguments, rather awaiting express authority from Congress. Many new space activities are on the near horizon, including commercial human space flight, asteroid mining, lunar and orbital private research labs and hotels, and on-orbit servicing of satellites. Private investors are seeking certainty for their investments, including private property rights, as well as safety from interference in their activities by others. However, the US commercial space sector is also concerned that heavy-handed regulation in the early stages of such activities could inhibit the activity or drive investment abroad, and thus seek to limit any on-orbit regulatory authority to be “light” in nature. The US government is anxious to ensure compliance with treaty obligations requiring it to authorize and continually supervise its commercial actors’ space activities to ensure compliance with treaty obligations. Foreign country reaction to US commercial activities in space may also depend on whether the US has a sufficient regulatory regime in place, one that for example would prevent contamination of Earth or celestial bodies in the case of mining, or risk to neighboring satellites during on-orbit servicing. Panel I will discuss government and industry views on the issue of on-orbit jurisdiction (or in-space regulatory authority) and Panel II will delve deeper into specific views of two sub-sectors of the US commercial space industry, those concerned with property rights and the sub-orbital marketplace.

11:30-12:40AM Public Panel I – “On-Orbit Jurisdiction: Government and Industry Views”

Laura Montgomery – Manager, Space Law Branch, FAA (confirmed)
Karl Kensinger – Deputy Division Chief, Satellite Division, FCC (confirmed)
Glenn Talia – Section Chief, Weather, Satellites, and Research Section, NOAA (confirmed)
Caryn Schenewerk – Counsel & Director of Government Affairs, SpaceX (confirmed)
Russ McMurry – Senior Counsel, Boeing Network & Space Systems (invited)
Franceska Schroeder – Principal, Fish & Richardson (confirmed)

Moderators: Professor Frans von der Dunk –Nebraska Law & Dennis Burnett – Vice-President, Kymeta

12:40-1:30PM Networking Lunch

1:30-2:30PM “On-Orbit Jurisdiction – Perspectives from Different Elements of Space Sector – Views from Property Rights Interests and Sub-Orbital Activities”

Mike Gold – Chair, COMSTAC (confirmed)
Peter Marquez – VP for Global Engagement, Planetary Resources (confirmed)
Marc Holzapfel – Senior VP & General Counsel, Virgin Galactic (confirmed)
Brett Alexander – Director of Strategy and Business Development, Blue Origin (invited)
Patti Grace Smith – Principal, PGS Consulting (confirmed)
Jim Muncy – Principal, PoliSpace Consulting (invited)

Moderators: Professor Matthew Schaefer- Nebraska Law & Dennis Burnett – Vice-President, Kymeta

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