A leading conservation charity has objected to Britain’s first vertical launch spaceport planned for a remote part of Scotland.
The Association for the Protection of Rural Scotland (APRS) has also written to Scottish Local Government Minister Kevin Stewart asking him to call in the application for the spaceport in Sutherland – but also all others in the country.
Spaceports are also planned for Unst in Shetland and the Uists in the Outer Hebrides.
“The issue of whether or not Scotland would benefit from having a spaceport, and if so which would be the least damaging site from a social and environmental point of view, is clearly of national importance.
“It should therefore be decided by the Scottish Government rather than by local planning authorities,” wrote John Mayhew, director of APRS, whose president is the acclaimed landscape photographer Colin Prior.
“I am therefore copying this objection to the Scottish Government’s Planning Minister to urge him to call in this and any other planning applications for a Spaceport for determination by Scottish Ministers, and to ensure that any such applications are refused until the NPF review has been completed.”
Highland and Islands Enterprise (HIE) has applied to Highland Council for a £17.3m spaceport at Melness near Tongue in Sutherland. It has drawn 442 objections and 117 comments in favour.