White House drafting 'Artemis Accords' for moon mining, report says

The proposed accords aim to build a framework allowing companies to own the resources they mine on the moon under international law.

Alison DeNisco Rayome Managing Editor
Managing Editor Alison DeNisco Rayome joined CNET in 2019, and is a member of the Home team. She is a co-lead of the CNET Tips and We Do the Math series, and manages the Home Tips series, testing out new hacks for cooking, cleaning and tinkering with all of the gadgets and appliances in your house. Alison was previously an editor at TechRepublic.
Expertise Home Tips, including cooking, cleaning and appliances hacks Credentials
  • National Silver Azbee Award for Impact/Investigative Journalism; National Gold Azbee Award for Online Single Topic Coverage by a Team; National Bronze Azbee Award for Web Feature Series
Alison DeNisco Rayome

The day after the "Pink Moon." Taken with my first ever DSLR, the Canon 60D with an 18-200mm lens.

Nic Henry / CNET

The White House is drafting a legal blueprint for mining on the moon under a US-sponsored international agreement called the Artemis Accords, Reuters reported Wednesday. 

Named after NASA's  Artemis moon mission, the Artemis Accords propose "safety zones" that would surround future moon bases to prevent damage or interference from other nations or companies, Reuters reported. It also lays out a framework allowing companies to own the resources they mine under international law, according to the report. 

Beyond Apollo: See NASA aim for the moon with Artemis 2024

See all photos

News of the accords follows the an April executive order from the Trump administration, which called on world leaders to join forces to extract the natural resources of the moon, paving the way for NASA to return astronauts to the surface of the moon as part of its Artemis program. The mission hopes to bring humans to the moon again in 2024 for the first time since 1972. 

US officials plan to negotiate the Artemis Accords with space partners like Canada, Japan, European countries and the United Arab Emirates, Reuters reported. Though Russia is a major partner with NASA on the International Space Station, it will not be an early partner in the accords. 

The White House didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.

Watch this: NASA's bid to get humans back to the moon