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FAA Opens Scoping Period for Planned Environmental Assessment of SpaceX’s Texas Launch Site

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SpaceX
SpaceX Starship Spacecraft

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has begun the scoping period for a planned environmental review of SpaceX’s Boca Chica site in Texas that will house launch operations for the company’s Starship spacecraft and Super Heavy rocket.

FAA said Tuesday that the scoping period is meant to help the FAA assess potential environmental issues at the site as well as alternative operational approaches.

The agency noted that SpaceX’s proposed operational updates at Boca Chica fall beyond the company’s latest Environmental Impact Statement and require additional reviews under the National Environmental Policy Act.

SpaceX is preparing a draft environmental assessment and is slated to complete safety assessments as part of its clearance application princess.

FAA is also seeking public comments on its plans to prepare a programmatic environmental assessment for Boca Chia operations.

Interested parties must submit feedback through Jan. 22, 2021.

In September 2019, SpaceX submitted its application to the FAA to allow data-exchange operations at Boca Chica for the Starship Mk1 vehicle.

FAA approved suborbital missions for Starship at the South Texas location in mid-2020.