Legal challenge could delay UK’s first ‘SpacePort’
The UK´s first Spaceport located in Scotland with an investment of £45 million has been delayed due to emerging legal issues. It seems the project was stopped since local farmers and crofters began a dispute indicating they would take legal actions. In spite of all comments, the spaceport project was approved last summer by the UK space agency assuring the opportunity of new jobs for citizens, however, the project might be delayed “for years” since landowners, workers and citizens of the place are opposing such action.
According to the report, the UK´s first spaceport would be located on the Melness Crofting Estate, on the A´Mhoine peninsula in coastal Sutherland, Scotland. The main idea of the project will launch micro-satellites into the low orbit in 2021 with the purposes of study and investigation of the area. It also will contribute in the nation creating 40 new jobs for locals and 400 more afield but with the emerging of hidden secrets deals and powerful tactics which include transgression to the public, the project is pending of a rope.
The people against the development of the spaceport claim that the selected area is not the best option since the spaceport is considered a threat to the wildlife in the area. Scotland´s peninsula is the place where rare eagles, seabirds and a delicate ecosystem exist. An example of the delicate wildlife opponents to the spaceport present is the rare white-tailed eagle which is Britain´s largest bird of prey would be in risk if the space project takes its place in the peninsula. Those seeking legal help on the matter have explore Manchester law firm options and others across the north of England.
The local councillor, Linda Munro told to the newspaper that there is not a doubt that the community has been divided in terms of opinion, but not equally. Munro alleges that the group which is against the spaceport is a small group compares to the people which are pro spaceport adding that the main misunderstanding is the lack of information in the community.
The councillor expressed her thoughts after an election process in order to decide the community final´s decision towards the construction of the spaceport where 27 crofters voted to let the spaceport´s project starts with no problems while 18 voted against such action.
Since citizens have not agreed in a possible resolution about the spaceport, the project might be a delay and put it in a “stand-by” situation while a final resolution appears. Moreover, experts on the field express the necessity of getting the spaceport as soon as possible since delays can compromise the goals of the project which is to establish an approximate number of 2,000 or 4,000 micro-satellites launched by the year of 2030.
The space project director, Roy Kirk affirms that the site was officially and legally approved by the government and institutions in charge of the plan. Kirk says that the reasons for selecting the disputed area was simply studies and reports that prove the area as the lowest field for crofting in order to protect the local jobs. He also adds that the spaceport would bring new jobs to the region increasing the local economy.
It is only matter of waiting for new declarations of the people in charge to see what would be the future for this project and the citizens around the area that are worried about the wildlife of their region.