Developer must prove space hub will not damage Scottish blanket bog

The developer of a first-of-a-kind vertical space launch station in the Highlands of Scotland must prove to the Scottish wildlife regulator that any damage to the area’s protected blanket bog can be “mitigated sufficiently”, or it will likely object to its construction.

The Sutherland Space Hub is being developed by economic development body Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE). It would be located in Caithness & Sutherland Peatlands, which is both a special area of conservation and special protection area, protected under the Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2017.

Details of the project were contained in an environmental impact assessment scoping report submitted to the Highlands Council earlier this summer, on behalf of HIE by consultants Ramboll. The proposal is to have a vertical launch site at Melness in Sutherland to launch small satellites into orbit around the earth.

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