8 October 2001
Space policy ethics
Motion for a recommendation
presented by Mr Roseta and others
This motion has not been discussed in the Assembly and commits only
the members who have signed it
The Assembly is aware of the importance of space activities for humankind as a whole and that scientific and technological developments in space exploration give rise to new benefits, but also to new challenges.
Space technologies require substantial investment and have implications in strategic terms and for international prestige.
Access to outer space and the exploration of the universe raise questions not only as to their aims, but also about the level of acceptability to public opinion as regards the extent of their cost and their fairness. Ethical consideration needs to be international, for outer space has been recognised as humankind’s common heritage.
The aim of an ethical approach to space policy is to bear in mind the primacy, dignity and rights of the human being, and to react to public anxieties with objectivity, independence and transparency. An approach of this kind prompts an evaluation of the degree of freedom of human beings in the face of the progress of knowledge and know-how in the space sector.
The Assembly takes the view that space activities need a precise legal framework based on ethical principles accepted by all who are involved in them.
It therefore recommends that the Committee of Ministers:
- take steps with a view to establishing an international regulatory framework governing the ethics of space exploration;
- define means of supervising the use of data derived from the application of space technologies;
- take appropriate steps with a view to efficient risk management;
- draw up an international convention to limit pollution resulting from space activities.
Signed : 1
Roseta, Portugal, EPP/CD
Baciu, Romania, SOC
Billing, Sweden, EDG
de Puig, Spain, SOC
Duka-Zolyomi, Slovakia, EPP/CD
Galoyan, Armenia, EPP/CD
Jäger, Germany, SOC
Kalkan, Turkey, EDG
Kiely, Ireland, LDR
Libicki, Poland, EDG
Pintat, Andorra, LDR
Rakhansky, Ukraine, UEL
Schicker, Austria, SOC
Sudarenkov, Russia, SOC
Tiuri, Finland, EDG
Velikov, Bulgaria, NR
1 SOC: Socialist Group
EPP/CD: Group of the European People’s Party
EDG: European Democratic Group
LDR : Liberal, Democratic and Reformers’ Group
UEL: Group of the Unified European Left
NR: not registered in a group