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Mankind returned to space in the 2040's with limited surveillance, weather and communication satellite launches, with manned missions following in the 50's. By the end of the century, near Earth orbit was cluttered with solar power satellites and orbital factories. The use of space produced disputes concerning territoriality, access to orbits and the legitimacy of selecting specific targets in armed conflicts. A continuing international discussion culminated in a series of treaties and agreements collectively known as the Melbourne Accords (first signed in Melbourne, Australia in 2099). The Accords had three main provisions: selected orbits around Earth were demilitarised, power satellites properly operated and certified were classified as civilian (rather than military) targets, and other worlds (at that time Mars, Mercury and the Jovian satellites) were declared open to colonisation by all. The Accords bound signatories to its provisions only with respect to other signatories. many smaller nations signed immediately; holdouts among the major powers included France, Bavaria, Britain, Azania (cooperating as the ESA) and Canton. Canton signed in 2108 while the ESA did not sign until 2163.

This article was copied or excerpted from the following copyrighted sources and used under license from Far Future Enterprises and by permission of the author.
Traveller: 2300 Player's Manual

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