The early days of American expansion were categorized by policies that emphasized resource extraction and utilization. In turn, these policies created major conflicts with overuse, ownership, and rehabilitation−, many of which continue to this day. Now, the United States has begun to shift its focus to the next untapped frontier: outer space. As resource extraction in space grows more feasible, the United States has begun to shape a regulatory framework. In doing so, the United States is copying early American resource policy, leaving open the same gaps for conflicts arising from overuse, ownership disputes, and restoration. This paper analyzes historical American resource policies, the issues created therein, and how the United States is currently poised to make the same mistakes on a much larger scale. Lastly, this paper identifies several current international models that could be used to mitigate conflicts before they happen.

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