The EPA is ready for lift off
The Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) has received the pre-launch notification for New Zealand’s first space
vehicle test launch.
The Mahia-based company Rocket Lab plans to launch its electron orbital space vehicle in the coming weeks.
As required by law, Rocket Lab has notified the EPA of its plans.
Rocket Lab must also alert us 24 hours ahead of any launch, to reconfirm its plans, and submit a post-launch report.
The EPA’s role for space vehicle launches
The EPA is responsible for protecting the environment by managing the effects of specific activities offshore, in the
Exclusive Economic Zone or Continental Shelf. This includes regulating space vehicle launches that jettison material
onto the seabed.
Space Vehicle launches are a permitted activity, which means people don’t have to apply to us for permission – but they
must follow certain rules.
The rules include making sure material lands in the designated zones, and notifying the EPA before any launches.