FAA Hosts First Public Virtual Hearing On SpaceX's Environmental Review For Starship Program, Invites Public To Participate In Wednesday Hearing

FAA Hosts First Public Virtual Hearing On SpaceX's Environmental Review For Starship Program, Invites Public To Participate In Wednesday Hearing

Featured Image Source: J. Arevalo @JaneidyEve via Twitter

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) invites the public to share their thoughts on SpaceX’s Draft Programmatic Environmental Assessment (PEA) for the Starship/Super Heavy program at Boca Chica Beach in Brownsville, Cameron County, Texas. The aerospace company is developing the world’s most powerful Starship launch vehicle to enable humanity to become a multi-planet species. SpaceX needs federal approval from regulatory agencies to conduct spaceflight activities in South Texas, and the FAA wants to hear what U.S. residents think about the Starship development program to evaluate SpaceX activities.

The FAA released an 152-page PEA document by SpaceX that evaluates the potential environmental impact of Starship operations at Boca Chica, including how rocket launches and landings could affect the neighboring wildlife refuge, the city of Brownsville, and South Padre Island. It also reviews how they plan to recover debris, launch pad and tower construction, road beach closures, among other launch-related things. The draft environmental review also elaborates on some things that local residents may be concerned about, like public beach access and spaceflight noise levels. You can access the document via FAA official website: FAA SpaceX

The month-long comment period enables the general public to submit a written letter to the FAA regarding SpaceX’s draft environmental review. The FAA also plans to hold virtual public hearings on October 18 and October 20 that allows people to voice their opinion on SpaceX operations at Boca Chica. “Please add your voice to the public comments. Support is greatly appreciated!” Musk said, “Humanity’s future on the moon, Mars & beyond depends upon it. Thanks, Elon,” he wrote via Twitter. If you would like to submit a comment, E-mail the FAA at: The deadline to submit a comment is November 1st. If you would like to participate in the next public virtual hearing, scheduled for Wednesday, October 20 at 5:00 p.m. Central Time, register in the link below.

The first public hearing took place on Monday, October 18, the Administration listened to U.S. residents opinions of SpaceX operations at Boca Chica Beach. The participant opinions ranged from SpaceX fans who support space exploration to people who voiced their concerns. City of Brownsville District 2 Commissioner Jessica Tetreau also participated in the virtual hearing, according to spaceflight reporter Eric Berger. –“Final comment from Jessica Tetreau, a Brownsville city commissioner. Notes that back in 2013 the area was the poorest community in the United States. SpaceX has changed everything. ‘Begs’ locals to give SpaceX a chance. Says the company now employs more than 2,000 people locally,” Berger said. He also shared via Twitter that “39-18 in favor of SpaceX. Strong feelings on both sides. Pro-SpaceX comments more likely to come from out-of-state but there were plenty of Texans. Anti-SpaceX comments a mix of environmentalism, local impacts,” he shared.



Featured Image Source: / @JaneidyEve via Twitter 

About the Author

Evelyn Arevalo

Evelyn Arevalo

Evelyn J. Arevalo joined Tesmanian in 2019 to cover news as a Space Journalist and SpaceX Starbase Texas Correspondent. Evelyn is specialized in rocketry and space exploration. The main topics she covers are SpaceX and NASA.

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