Astropolitics: Depletion of Terrestrial Resources and the Cosmic Future of Capitalism

A highly complex diagram depicting the orbits of several satellites and space stations above Earth, along with mining locations and other environmental concerns across the planet's surface.

(Far right) Map Legend

Techno-Industrial Complex Earth/Moon

Devices for the Exploration, Industrial Deployment and Extraction of Extraterrestrial Resources

Terrestrial Zones of Environmental or Social Crises Linked to the Exploitation of Mineral Resources and to their Industrial Transformation

Lunar Mining Resources


The Earth’s Surface


(Far left) Space Mining


(Top to bottom)

Geosynchronous Orbit, 35,000 km (orbit where satellites match Earth’s rotation)

Medium Earth Orbit 2

Medium Earth Orbit 1, 2000 km

Low Earth Orbit, 200 km






(Top to bottom)

Low Lunar Orbit

Lagrange Points L1 & L2 (locations in space where the Sun and Earth gravity pull balance out)


The Moon’s Surface

Designer: Bureau d’Études (France); Collaborator: Ewen Chardronnet (space culture advisor) (France); Initial presentation: Centre Pompidou, Paris, France; Earth and Moon; 2018 – 19

Bureau d’Études creates critical cartography—maps that examine contemporary political, social, and economic systems. The Astropolitics map exposes a potential conflict over Moon resource extraction, locating satellite systems, environmental and social crises linked to mining, and lunar bases and machines required for extraction. By making these systems visible, the map helps us consider our future. Like the 1967 Outer Space Treaty, which established use of space for peaceful purposes and the common interest of all, it calls on us again to reimagine the Earth, Moon, and other celestial bodies as interconnected places, not simply an endless cosmos ripe for exploitation.


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