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HOME  > Past issues  > 2014 July 30 - August 12  > Environmental groups petition US court to have construction of US base in Okinawa stopped
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2014 July 30 - August 12 [POLITICS]

Environmental groups petition US court to have construction of US base in Okinawa stopped

August 2, 2014
Environmental groups in Japan and the U.S. on August 1 together filed a petition to the U.S. Federal District Court in San Francisco seeking an injunction against the construction of a new U.S. base in Nago’s Henoko district in Okinawa claiming the need to protect the natural habitats of endangered species of dugongs.

The petition is a part of a court action which the environmental groups launched in 2003 at the same district court demanding that the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) take into thorough consideration the need to protect the rare mammal.

In 2008, the federal court issued an interim ruling that supported the plaintiffs’ claim and judged that the Pentagon is in violation of the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA). The court ordered the DOD to take measures in accordance with the act and to compile a report on protective measures to be implemented to ensure the survival of the dugongs.

Following the court ruling, the U.S. defense authority submitted to the court a report which concludes that the construction of the new base will have a minimum adverse effect on dugongs.

The present petition points out that the report was drawn up arbitrarily without scientific grounding. It seeks a court order to have the U.S. military to carefully assess possible adverse effects of the construction project on dugongs and preventive measures that may be required, and refrain from construction work until the study is completed.

Past related articles
> Lawyer calls U.S. new base in Nago illegal under U.S. law [December 17, 2009]
> U.S. document reveals deception of Japanese government explanation concerning new U.S. base in Okinawa [September 26, 2007]
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