Bush grants exemption from environmental law for Navy sonar use Katerina Ossenova at 2:23 PM ET
[JURIST] US President George W. Bush on Tuesday authorized the US Navy to continue using sonar [press release] in its anti-submarine warfare training off the coast of southern California despite a November 2007 ruling [PDF text; NRDC press release] by the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit that the Navy should limit its use of high-powered sonar [JURIST report]. Bush exempted the Navy from the requirements of the Coastal Zone Management Act (CZMA) [text] on the basis that the use of sonar is of paramount interest to US national security. The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) [advocacy website], which brought the original lawsuit to halt Navy sonar use, warned that sonar is harmful to whales and other marine mammals [press release] while NRDC President Joel Reynolds characterized the presidential waiver as "an attack on the rule of law." NRDC plans to file an appeal to Bush's exemption.
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