2003 CPEO Military List Archive

From: CPEO Moderator <cpeo@cpeo.org>
Date: 10 Nov 2003 16:26:41 -0000
Reply: cpeo-military
Subject: [CPEO-MEF] Defense bill leaves animals less defended
Defense bill leaves animals less defended
Christopher Dunagan
November 8, 2003

 Many Democrats are offended by the process, as well as being concerned
about whales and other marine mammals.

Amid heightened fears about war, Defense Department officials have
succeeded in weakening two major environmental laws as they apply to
military operations.

Special military exemptions were added to the Marine Mammal Protection
Act and the Endangered Species Act by attaching them to the $401 billion
defense authorization bill. The measure passed the House on Friday and
is expected to be approved by the Senate early next week.

Environmentalists and more than a few Democratic congressmen were
outraged by the changes as well as the process, which bypassed review by
natural resource committees in both houses.

"This is the most egregious assault on wildlife laws in this country,"
declared David Phillips of Earth Island Institute in San Francisco.
"Congress and the Bush administration should be ashamed of themselves."

But Pentagon officials said the changes are needed because current
environmental restrictions are compromising training and readiness.

The changes come as Navy sonar is scrutinized for its potential harm to
marine mammals and as Northwest experts are trying to save Puget Sound's
orcas from extinction.

This article can be viewed at:

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