Protect The Whales, Seals & Dolphins
Groups sue over Navy sonar use off Northwest coast
SEATTLE (AP) — Conservationists and Native American tribes are suing over the Navy’s expanded use of sonar in training exercises off the Washington, Oregon and California coasts, saying the noise can harass and kill whales and other marine life.
In a lawsuit being filed Thursday by the environmental law firm Earthjustice, the Natural Resources Defense Council and other groups against the National Marine Fisheries Service claims the service was wrong to approve the Navy’s plan for the expanded training.
They said the regulators should have considered the effects repeated sonar use can have on those species over many years and also required certain restrictions on where the Navy could conduct sonar and other loud activities to protect orcas, humpbacks and other whales, as well as seals, sea lions and dolphins.
Instead, the Navy is required to look around and see if sea mammals are present before they conduct the training.