Federal lawsuit challenges SpaceX environmental review

Federal lawsuit challenges SpaceX environmental review
6 months 3 weeks 1 day ago Thursday, December 21 2023 Dec 21, 2023 December 21, 2023 7:40 PM December 21, 2023 in News - Local

A federal lawsuit calls SpaceX’s launch approval process into question.

The lawsuit, filed by the Center for Biological Diversity and other environmental groups, are taking the Federal Aviation Administration and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to court over the permits issued for the Nov. 18 launch from SpaceX’s Boca Chica facility.

The lawsuit claims the environmental review made under the endangered species act following the initial launch made in April was not enough.

That launch ended with parts of the launch pad destroyed, and a cloud of sand blowing several miles away.

“That resulted in large chunks of concrete and metal being blown into sensitive tidal flats," Center for Biological Diversity attorney Jared Margolis said. “When they reviewed that for the second launch, they really didn't do any analysis on what occurred in the April 20 launch. They didn't take a look at how the explosion of the launchpad and that debris affected the habitat for species. They didn't look at how the ongoing efforts to recover debris are affecting listed species."

The lawsuit is calling for a stricter approval process for future SpaceX launch permits.

That complaint will now be heard by a federal court in Washington, DC.

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