We use necessary cookies to make our website work. We'd also like to use optional cookies to understand how you use it, and to help us improve it.

For more information, please read our cookie policy.



Assessment of Environmental Effects 

If you are applying for a launch operator or spaceport licence under the Space Industry Act 2018 (SIA), you will need to submit an assessment of environmental effects (AEE).

The purpose of the AEE is to ensure you have considered the potential environmental effects of your planned activities and, if needed, taken steps to mitigate any risks and their potential effects.

Our guidance for the assessment of environmental effects explains what an AEE is and what we expect it to include.

Environmental Objectives

Under the SIA, we are required to take into account environmental objectives set by the Transport Secretary.

The guidance to the regulator on environmental objectives explains:

  • what the environmental objectives are
  • how the objectives fit with overarching environmental policies
  • what we will look for in your AEE to meet them

When producing your AEE you need to consider a number of things:

Have you arranged a pre-application meeting with us?

We strongly encourage prospective launch operator and spaceport licence applicants to engage in pre-application discussions with us about their AEE as soon as possible. You can arrange a meeting here.

Close Have you arranged a pre-application meeting with us?

Have you provided all the details needed?

Our guidance for the assessment of environmental effects tells you what you need to include in your AEE and we also have an internally targeted checklist .

We use this when carrying out our initial screen of an AEE. It helps us ensure your AEE includes the information needed and that it can be put out for public consultation. It may be of help to you, but it is not a step-by-step guide on writing an AEE.

Close Have you provided all the details needed?

Have you appointed competent experts?

You must use competent environmental experts to develop your AEE. We will need to see evidence of relevant expertise and qualifications, within the AEE, that demonstrates their competency.

Close Have you appointed competent experts?

Our environmental review principles

We must take AEEs into account when deciding whether or not to grant a licence and what, if any, conditions should be attached.

We also need to consider any environmental objectives set by the Transport Secretary.

Our guidance for the Space Industry Act 2018 on the Civil Aviation Authority’s environmental review principles  explains our approach to taking into account an AEE and the environmental objectives. it also explains how we undertake our review in accordance with our key principles.

Close Our environmental review principles

How we run public consultations

Our guidance explains our approach to consulting the public on AEEs, including when and how this will happen in the application process. It also provides advice to applicants to carrying out their own stakeholder engagement.

Close How we run public consultations

Are you meeting any wider environmental requirements?

There are other environmental requirements operating under separate legislation, independent of your AEE. To ensure you comply with all environmental obligations, you should contact all environmental regulators under whose jurisdiction your activities fall.

For example:

  • A marine licence may be required for the deposit of any dropped stages. Applications should liaise with the appropriate marine licensing body in their area.
  • Environmental permits, such as water discharges and emissions to air, might be required to conduct certain activities. Applicants should liaise with the appropriate Environmental Protection Agency in their area.
  • Any international environmental permissions that might be required to conduct certain activities within other international remits.
Close Are you meeting any wider environmental requirements?