2003 CPEO Military List Archive

From: CPEO Moderator <cpeo@cpeo.org>
Date: 19 Mar 2003 20:19:47 -0000
Reply: cpeo-military
Subject: [CPEO-MEF] Military Seeks an Exemption of Its Own
Military Seeks an Exemption of Its Own
Bases want to be excused from compliance with environmental laws.
By Julie Cart, Times Staff Writer

Saying military readiness is at stake, the Pentagon is asking Congress
to exempt military installations, including several in California, from
environmental laws protecting marine mammals and endangered species and
requiring the cleanup of potentially toxic weapons sites.

The Readiness and Range Preservation Initiative, sponsored by the White
House, seeks exemptions from several environmental laws:
* A section of the Endangered Species Act that protects wildlife

* Sections of the Marine Mammal Protection Act that prohibit harassment
of whales, dolphins, manatees and other sea mammals.

* Part of the Superfund statute that covers cleanups of explosives and

* Clean Air Act requirements for military vehicles during training.

* Hazardous waste laws that prohibit exposed toxic substances and
require paying damages to states in cases of contamination.

The Defense Department presented its case during hearings on Capitol
Hill last week, outlining its request that branches of the service be
given the flexibility to operate outside the restrictions of
environmental laws, which the military says hamper training and

The initiative is being considered by committees in the House and

The California military installations most affected are Camp Pendleton,
Ft. Irwin, Edwards Air Force Base, China Lake Naval Weapons Center, the
Twentynine Palms Marine base and, east of the Salton Sea, the Chocolate
Mountain Aerial Gunnery Range.

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