The global agency that sets the rules for the seas examines the environmental impacts of increasing rocket rates that may contain toxic fuels falling into the world's oceans.
The International Maritime Organization's concern came about after the Inuit groups expressed anger over the Russian launch phases that spilled over Canadian hunters on water-dependent food. It also follows research that describes in detail the satellite industry that is growing all over the world, despite a slight understanding of its implications.
"We are just beginning to gather information," said Linda Porebski, senior environmental officer in Canada, who leads one of the scientific bodies of the maritime group that she just met in Vancouver.
"In general, we are aware that the number of launches is increasing, and that there are incentive rockets falling and that there is a potential fuel on board."
General awareness is all about a fast-growing sector, said David Santillo, a biologist funded by Greenpeace at the University of Exeter, UK.
"We can not reach very far in terms of knowing precisely what will begin, how much it will happen in the oceans, what material will it carry, how much excess fuel," he said.
"This information is very difficult to get."
Greenpeace has decided to deal with this issue in 2017 after Inuit's concern that a missile that started operating in Russia and carrying a satellite owned by the European Space Agency fell to the north of the Arctic, the most biologically productive areas of the Arctic .
Academic research has revealed at least 11 such explosions since 2002. All these missiles were driven by very toxic hydrazines.
Documents published in accordance with the laws on access to information show that there were others. The launch site in French Guiana also uses routes that fall into the Arctic. "Remaining dangerous fuels can still be in reservoirs at re-entry," the documents say.
Lists of 39 cities around the world. The research by Santillia has revealed that at least 30 companies that send satellites into orbit, some plan weekly raises. A company in Canso, N.S., applied for the launch of rockets powered by hydrazine.
There is little publicity about their travels or possible wreckage, said Santillo.
Although the rockets regularly supply additional fuel, officials refuse the risk. The European Space Agency has said that the remains of the remains will be burnt on re-entry.
Canadian government documents reflect this.
"It's unlikely that hydrazine will still be present when wrecks will fall to Earth," wrote one of the staff members at Global Affairs Canada. The second is the probability of rocket fuel entering the oceans to be called a "false narrative".
Others are not so sure.
"It is possible that more than 10 percent of the remaining fuel is potentially present in the upper part of the launch vehicle," the national defense official wrote, although she added that it was "very likely" that the risk would be very low. "
In a written reply to another email, he wrote: "I am not sure that I share your assessment of the claims that the risks are overburdened, especially given the potential for a significant increase in traffic … it is certainly a lack of tracking or heavy data to support any actual conclusions on risks or impacts. "
Research from Russian sites suggests that some fuel reaches the surface of the water.
Hydrazine is gradually eliminated from most space programs, but Santillo says other fuels are also harmful.
"There is general concern. The problem is getting information about what these alternative fuels are and how they will behave in the environment. "
Contaminants may include other materials, such as battery components, said Santillo.
"Each of them has a common environmental burden."
He said that her group had requested information from governments and international bodies dealing with space. She said that they hope that preliminary data will be prepared by June.
"We are looking for a dialogue on how to go ahead."
Santillo said that the space industry is the only one that uses the oceans without any regulation. Now is the time to re-think, he said.
"As soon as possible such thinking can be, there are more chances that we can achieve something more sustainable than starting a vehicle and forget about it."