Stand up for wild Atlantis with a quick email or two, before the US Navy gets approved by Brian Swan of Maine DMR under the Coastal Zone Management Act (CZMA) to carry out sonar testing and other military actions in Maine state waters.
The deadline for Maine DMR to accept public input on whether the sonar and other actions are safe or not is February 27, 2013. Details below.
WHAT IS HAPPENING The Navy has to get a Consistency Determination under the CZMA from Maine DMR that states that Maine's marine wildlife in state waters won't be harmed by the Navy's sonar testing and other actions. If Maine denies the Navy its approval, the Navy has to appeal directly to President Obama for permission to override Maine.
The Navy's proposed training and testing activities include pier-side sonar testing at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard and Bath Iron Works, surface warship and submarine sonar maintenance, and anti-submarine tracking exercises in state waters. Outside Maine state waters the Navy wants to carry out "at-sea testing of active sound navigation and ranging (sonar) devices, gunnery exercises, and torpedo tests".
The Navy has prepared a draft "Atlantic Fleet Training and Testing Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) and Overseas EIS" Maine DMR's is supposed to read it and decide if it will harm Maine "marine resources". the EIS actually covers the waters along the entire east coast and Gulf of Mexico. But Maine is at the top end of the chain so what gets decided here, matters as precedent. The Navy website includes links to their environmental and conservation studiesm, including marine mammals and seabirds.
Swan has been DMR federal liaison for a long time. He usually just approves whatever the feds, Navy or others, want. YOU have an opportunity to stiffen his resolve to stand up for the wild marine life that the state of Maine proposes to turn its back on, while the navy proceeds with its antisub war games. The deadline is February 27, 2013, if you want to get your two cents in.
Written public comments to: Brian Swan, Maine Department of Marine Resources, P.O. Box 8, 194 McKown Point Road, West Boothbay, Maine 04575-008, firstname.lastname@example.org on or before February 27, 2013.
|Appeared in: Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram on Sunday, 01/27/2013|