The Dark Side is known for raw power, not paperwork. In preparing to construct the ill-fated Starkiller Base, did the First Order prepare any sort of Environmental Impact Statement prior to turning the planet into a weapon?


Requirements for Environmental Impact Statements

By way of comparison, and in no way comparing the First Order to the current EPA, Federal agencies undertaking a project that can significantly affect “the quality of the human environment,” must prepare a detailed statement on:

(i) The environmental impact of the proposed action,

(ii) Any adverse environmental effects which cannot be avoided should the proposal be implemented,

(iii) Alternatives to the proposed action,

(iv) The relationship between local short-term uses of man’s environment and the maintenance and enhancement of long-term productivity, and

(v) Any irreversible and irretrievable commitments of resources which would be involved in the proposed action should it be implemented.

42 U.S.C.S. § 4332.

Environmental Impact Statements (EIS) must be more than a checklist of assurances and alternatives. An EIS must indicate the agency undertook searching, realistic analysis of hazards, and candidly address those concerns. Foundation on Economic Trends v Weinberger 610 F Supp 829 (1985, DC Dist Col).

Courts review EIS to insure that the government took a “hard look” at possible environmental consequences, not highly speculative consequences. ESI’s will be approved if the document “adequately discloses potential impacts of project given information on hand and gives decision makers enough information so that intelligent decision can be made whether to proceed with project.” Enos v Marsh 616 F Supp 32, (1984, DC Hawaii), affirmed 769 F2d 1363, (1985, CA9 Hawaii).

Did General Armitage Hux take a “hard look” at the possible environmental consequences of turning a planet into a Super Weapon? Most likely not. Digging a trench across the equatorial axis of a planet that was visible from space, meant that thousands of miles of the planet had been excavated. How many indigenous animals had their habitats destroyed as entire continents were unearthed?

Weaponizing the power of a star through a planet sounds like a high risk activity. Any system failure could either do massive damage to the planet or destroy it. Furthermore, did the First Order consider that the failure of the Super Weapon oscillator could result in the destruction of the planet? Did they consider such a failure as a speculative consequence and not a possible one if the oscillator was destroyed? Given the fact the planet had a defensive shield, it appears the First Order took this risk as a possible one.

The First Order clearly did not have any interest in protecting the environment on Starkiller Base. The planet was a means to an end to execute a Neo-Doctrine of Fear. While the late Grand Moff Tarkin would have appreciated the vision, the First Order did not account for any adverse environmental effects of a planetary weapons system.