REDMOND, Wash. (Planetary Resources PR) — Planetary Resources, Inc., the asteroid mining company, praises the members of Congress who promoted historic legislation (H.R. 2262) that recognizes the right of U.S. citizens to own asteroid resources they obtain as property and encourages the commercial exploration and recovery of resources from asteroids, free from harmful interference.
In a contentious hearing on Wednesday, the Republican controlled House Science Committee approved a measure that would give companies rights to materials they mine from asteroids over complaints from Democrats that the measure was unconstitutional and drawn up to benefit a single company.
Legislation that would grant property rights to entities mining asteroids has been introduced in Congress.
“Any asteroid resources obtained in outer space are the property of the entity that obtained such resources, which shall be entitled to all property rights thereto, consistent with applicable provisions of Federal law,” the measure states.
Proving that there is some vision in Congress after all, U.S. Representatives Bill Posey (R-FL) and Derek Kilmer (D-WA) have introduced introduced the American Space Technology for Exploring Resource Opportunities in Deep Space (ASTEROIDS) Act of 2014, which “establishes and protects property rights for commercial space exploration and utilization of asteroid resources.”
Now, if they can only get a budget passed by the end of the fiscal year, Congress could demonstrate vision and basic competence at governance, something it hasn’t achieved in many years. (It’s looking like another continuing resolution for NASA.)