Public consultation on the Assessment of Environmental Effects: SaxaVord Spaceport

Closed 8 Dec 2022

Opened 10 Nov 2022

Feedback updated 14 Feb 2024

We asked

We consulted on the Assessment of Environmental Effects as part of SaxaVord’s spaceport licence – granted in December 2023.

You said

The SaxaVord Assessment of Environmental Effects (AEE) version 2.1 dated 30/09/2022 has been publicised and consulted upon in accordance with the Civil Aviation Authority’s (CAA’s) guidance on the public consultation of AEEs (CAP2352).

This summarises the consultation responses received and how the CAA has taken them into account and ensured any relevant matters have been appropriately addressed in the AEE or the Licence. 

We did

The AEE was updated (V3) on 30/06/2023 in response to requests for further information (RFIs) during the detailed review. A minor update was made to the document, and this was re-submitted to the CAA on 01/08/2023.

Note, as the update was minor, the date and version number did not change within the document. AEE (V3) was not published on the website and re-consulted upon as it was determined that updates to the AEE were minimal and did not materially change overall conclusions, and no further consultation was needed. We have now published AEE V3 for completeness.  

For the updated document you can check the SaxaVord Spaceport AAE V3 series. 

Results updated 9 Feb 2024

SaxaVord Spaceport Assessment of Environmental Effects Public Consultation Responses.

The SaxaVord Assessment of Environmental Effects (AEE) version 2.1 dated 30/09/2022 has been publicised and consulted upon in accordance with the Civil Aviation Authority’s (CAA’s) guidance on the public consultation of AEEs (CAP2352). This summarises the consultation responses received and how the CAA has taken them into account and ensured any relevant matters have been appropriately addressed in the AEE or the Licence.


The AEE was advertised and made available to view online on the CAA Citizen’s Space website: https://consultations.caa.co.uk/corporate-communications/public-consultation-aee-saxavord/. The consultation opened on the 10/11/2022 and closed on the 08/12/2022.


The AEE was updated (V3) on 30/06/2023 in response to requests for further information (RFIs) during the detailed review. A minor update was made to the document, and this was re-submitted to the CAA on 01/08/2023. Note, as the update was minor, the date and version number did not change within the document. AEE (V3) was not published on the website and re-consulted upon as it was determined that updates to the AEE were minimal and did not materially change overall conclusions, and no further consultation was needed.

 

Files:

Overview

To carry out spaceflight activity in the UK spaceport and launch operators must be licensed by the UK Civil Aviation Authority (CAA).

As part of their licence application, spaceport and launch operators are required to submit an Assessment of Environmental Effects (AEE). The purpose of the AEE is to ensure applicants have adequately considered any potential environmental effects of their intended activities and, if necessary have taken steps to avoid, mitigate or offset the risks and their potential effects.

Shetland Space Centre Limited has applied to operate a vertical spaceport, known as SaxaVord Spaceport. SaxaVord will be located on the Lamba Ness Peninsula, in the northeast of Unst.

Shetland Space Centre Limited are proposing up to 30 launches per year over a period of 30 years from SaxaVord spaceport, comprising both orbital and sub-orbital launches.

For orbital launches, the height of the launch vehicle is assumed to be between 13 and 30 meters; rockets will have either two or three stages. The sub-orbital launch vehicles will be between 1.5 to 8 metres in height and will be a single stage. All launches will take place in a northerly direction over the sea.

For spaceport and launch operator licences the CAA must take into account the applicant’s assessments and the proposed measures to mitigate any significant environmental effects before a recommendation for approval can be granted.

Please use the contents page to go through the documents below in order to read the AEE. 

Your browser does not support inline PDF viewing. Please download the PDF.

More information on the CAA’s approach to public consultation can be found by reading the following guidance document (CAP2352

 

 

Why your views matter

We encourage you to share any feedback on the AEE, including any potential effects on you and your local environment.

In your comments, please consider the following: 

  • the identified environmental effects and the assessment of these effects
  • if proposed mitigation methods are appropriate or where further mitigations may be required
  • any gaps, improvements, or corrections to the AEE.

We will consider comments received when deciding whether to grant the licence and any relevant licence conditions. Following the outcome of our assessment, we will publish information on our final decisions and associated reasoning related to the AEE.

Audiences

  • Spaceflight

Interests

  • Spaceflight