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Opponents Worried About Spaceport Camden's Impact On Cumberland Island

2017 file photo of Spaceport Camden, Ga.

The FAA has yet to approve a new commercial spaceport in Camden County, Georgia.

Supporters of the new port include everyone from Georgia Governor Brian Kemp to former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich.

However, a vocal contingent of local residents is speaking out against the project.

In particular, they say they’re worried about the impact of launching experimental rockets over the environmentally sensitive Cumberland Island National Seashore.

Harriet Bluffs resident Steve Weinkle, who opposes the spaceport spoke out on First Coast Connect with Melissa Ross on Wednesday.

“Cumberland Island is a national treasure. It’s unique in that, it has a 10,000-acre wilderness area. Wilderness areas are accorded the highest level of environmental protection in the United States. Launching rockets over a wilderness is far more impactful than launching rockets over the Grand Canyon or launching rockets over the Statue of Liberty,” Weinkle said.

Related: Listen to the full interview with Weinkle

Meanwhile, supporters of the Camden Spaceport say it would bring good-paying, high tech jobs to the communities of Kingsland and St. Marys.

According to a Tribune & Georgian story published in March, the county has spent more than $6.5 million on Spaceport Camden and that cost could rise to well over $11 million.

Melissa Ross can be reached at, 904-358-6382 or on Twitter at @MelissainJax.