Bush OKs Navy Use of Sonar to Kill Whales, Other Mammals
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WASHINGTON-President Bush exempted the Navy from an environmental law so it can continue using sonar in its anti-submarine warfare training off the California coast -- a practice critics say is harmful to whales and other marine mammals.
The White House announced Wednesday that Bush had signed the exemption Tuesday while traveling in the Middle East.
"The president's action is an attack on the rule of law," said Joel Reynolds, director of the Marine Mammal Protection Project at the Natural Resources Defense Council. "By exempting the Navy from basic safeguards under both federal and state law, the president is flouting the will of Congress, the decision of the California Coastal Commission and a ruling by the federal court."
A federal judge had issued a preliminary injunction earlier this month requiring the Navy to create a 12-nautical-mile, no-sonar zone along the California coast and to post trained lookouts to watch for marine mammals before and during exercises. Sonar would have to be shut down when mammals are spotted within 2,200 yards, under the order.
"Attack on the rule of law" should be the motto of the Bush administration. Here is just a small take on the experts that say sonar disorientates and kills whales.