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Satellites

Question for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office

UIN 7820, tabled on 26 May 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what discussions has he had with his international counterparts on the de-cluttering of satellites in space.

Answered on

10 June 2021

The Government actively participates in a number of multi-lateral fora, including the UN Committee on Peaceful Uses of Outer Space and its Subcommittees and the Inter-Agency Space Debris Coordination Committee (IADC), alongside a number of bodies defining safety standards. The UK Government works collaboratively with its international partners to define the best practice and associated guidelines that will ensure space is accessible for future generations.

The UK also plays a leading role in supporting the development of technology for the sustainable and responsible use of space. The UK is the largest contributor to the European Space Agency (ESA) Space Safety programme aimed at preventing collisions in space, improving detection and tracking of objects in space and fielding demonstration missions of active capture and safe de-orbiting of spent satellites. The UK Government has also licensed a number of UK-operated technology demonstration missions for active debris removal in orbit.