Space for Peace NZ Petition

Safer Technology Aotearoa New Zealand

June 16, 2021

To: Minister of Business, Innovation and Employment Stuart Nash

To immediately suspend Rocket Lab launches of military payloads which contribute to the weaponisation of space and ongoing warfare on Earth.

This petition asks the Government to refuse consent for Space industry activities which contribute to organised international warfare and the weaponisation of Space.

Why is this important?

In March this year Rocket Lab launched a US military Space Missile Defense Command payload ‘Gunsmoke-J’ which will be used for ‘warfare combat targeting purposes’.

It’s highly likely that the ‘Gunsmoke-J’ launch could have breached the New Zealand Nuclear Free Zone Disarmament and Arms Control Act (1987), because technological warfare systems in Space will include nuclear weapons.

In addition, it could have violated the ‘Approach to payload assessments under OSHAA 2019’ which states that the NZ government will not approve ‘payloads with the intended end use of harming, interfering with or destroying other space craft or systems on Earth.’

We don’t want any more military satellites launched in Aotearoa New Zealand, and ask that the Government should immediately rescind any currently permitted launches and disallow further launches, pending a full review of space-launch regulations in concert with the government-mandated review of the Outer Space and High-Altitude Activities (OSHA) Act 2017.

An open letter was sent to Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern by The Peace Foundation International Affairs and Disarmament Committee asking her to refuse approval for the ‘Gunsmoke J’ launch. That letter is supported by people and organisations around New Zealand, as well as residents near Māhia — the site of Rocket Lab’s launch pad.

Rocket Lab is now US owned, a major client is the US military Space Force and a key investor is Lockheed Martin the world’s biggest manufacturer of conventional and nuclear weapons. Thus, the New Zealand government must ensure the OSHAA regulations prohibit the use of NZ for Space warfare by these entities with vested interests in the warfare business.

Stuart Nash, the Minister of Economic Development who is responsible for approving Space launches, should reject further military Space launches, because they contributes to the technological development of warfare in Space, which is contrary to the interest of ordinary people in New Zealand.

SIGN PETITION HERE:

https://our.actionstation.org.nz/petitions/space-for-peace-3

READ MORE HERE:
NZ rocket launches may breach nuclear-free laws, say peace groups, The Spinoff https://thespinoff.co.nz/politics/09-03-2021/nz-rocket-launches-may-breach-nuclear-free-laws-say-peace-groups/

Rocket Lab Monitor – is a group of volunteers focusing on information collection and education https://rocketlabmonitor.com/

Gisborne Herald: Payload disquiet http://www.gisborneherald.co.nz/frontpage-featured/20210309/payload-disquiet/

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