If humans ever move to the moon, we'll need a steady supply of the two most basic elements for life: Sunlight and water. The lunar poles have long been prime candidates for settlement, because they're exposed to sunlight almost all the time and because for at least three years now, scientists have known they contain water.
Would-be moon miners will need good lawyers if they want to keep the lunar resources they’re harvesting, according to space policy experts. The Outer Space Treaty of 1967 appears to permit extraction of lunar water and other resources, but it’s not clear who would own the materials once they’re extracted.
It’s been a great day for interplanetary H2O. First we hear that Mars was once covered in a massive, deep ocean. Now scientists at the Carnegie Institution's Geophysical Laboratory are reporting that the moon may harbor 100 times more water than previously thought.