Conservation group object to Sutherland spaceport project

13th Apr 2020
Conservation group object to Sutherland spaceport project

The UK Space Agency has very ambitious plans for Scotland’s space potential. Plenty of project applications for UK spaceport construction are currently pending approval. However, not everyone is in favor of such development plans. In particular, the Association for the Protection of Rural Scotland (APRS) is concerned with the Sutherland spaceport project and asks Scottish Local Government Minister Kevin Stewart to call in this application. 

Environmental concerns about Sutherland Spaceport

While Sutherland Spaceport has every chance of becoming the first UK spaceport for vertical launches, plenty of residents and local activists have opposed its construction. Their main concern is that this site is to be located in a peat bog, crucial for the protection of our planet as the peat acts as natural carbon capture resource. Plenty of written objections against this UK spaceport have already been filed with the local authorities. 

John Mayhew, director of APRS, has concerns about this matter being handled by the Scottish government, not the local council. He believes that UK spaceport construction may bring social and environmental damage to the region and, therefore, this decision should be taken away from the local council. 

HIE’s Response to Environmental Claims about Sutherland Spaceport

Highland and Islands Enterprise, a development organisation managing the Sutherland spaceport project, claims that new facilities will not affect the environment. Project specification has been carefully analyzed to minimize all impact on local environment. Besides, this construction site is located far from residential areas, so a new facility should not disrupt social life of the region. 

More importantly, this facility is about to create new job opportunities for local residents and several hundred remote positions. So, Sutherland spaceport will boost Scotland’s economy while leaving its environment intact according to Highlands and Islands Enterprise.

It is not yet clear whether Sutherland Spaceport will become the first UK spaceport as local government is considering arguments for and against this construction site. 

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