This House of Lords Library briefing provides background information on the Space Industry Bill [HL].
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The Space Industry Bill [HL] is a Government bill, introduced in the House of Lords on 27 June 2017. It is scheduled for second reading on 12 July 2017.
The Government’s aim in the Space Industry Bill is to establish a new regulatory framework for UK based spaceflight activities, including the operation of UK-based spaceports and the launch of new craft, including spaceplanes. The Bill includes the following provisions:
- To establish a framework for the regulation of spaceflight and associated activities in the UK, in line with the UK’s obligations under the UN space treaties.
- To set up a new spaceflight licensing regime and prohibit unlicensed spaceflight activities.
- To protect the safety and security for spaceflight activities. This includes the creation of new offences against the safety of a spacecraft, such as hijacking, and the application of UK criminal law to spacecraft.
- To establish the extent to which spaceflight operators are liable for injury or damage; the powers of the Secretary of State to indemnify against those liabilities; and the requirement for spaceflight operators to have insurance.
- To prevent individuals from taking part in space activities without their informed consent or without appropriate training, qualifications or proven medical fitness.
- To grant powers to the Secretary of State in relation land for the purposes of spaceflight activity.
- To require a register of space launches in the UK be maintained.