1980 Societal Assessment of SPS

specific questions. Since each group worked independently of the other, the responses differ in format and content. A consensus among the three groups determined 44 questions that covered the concerns expressed by the respondents from all three groups. Answers to the questions were prepared by SPSPD field investigators working on the subjects in question. A compilation of the questions and answers was mailed back to respondees in the three groups. Success of the outreach experiment is evident in the range and number of questions and concerns provided by the respondents. Two studies (one on SPS insurability and one on satellite orbit degradation) were initiated as a result. Although most concerns had been previously identified through other mechanisms in the Participatory Technology Process, the relative importance of these concerns for each group were identified. Many concerns were common to the three groups, differing only in terms of priority. The most common concerns of members in all three groups were microwave bioeffects, the societal ramifications of centralized power generation, opportunity costs, and military implications. The outreach also provided considerable information about the communicative process in the early development of an advanced technological concept such as SPS. Through the combined efforts of all three groups, 9200 in- dividuals/organizations received information about the SPS concept, and over 1500 recipients of this information provided feedback. The response to the outreach effort was positive for all three groups, suggesting that the effort extended by the SPS Project Division to encourage information exchange with the public was well received. However, there were some questions raised by respondents in all three groups as to whether or not public input would be utilized. The outreach effort also generated requests for additional information from the constituents of all three groups, and many respondents have expressed interest in continued involvement. The following is a more detailed summary of the results obtained by each group. (1) Citizens Energy Project Approximately 350 recipients of the SPS summaries responded. The geographic distribution of responses were similar to the population distribution