Navy Final EIS contains numerous flaws-West Coast Action Alliance


In my email today. There are steps you can take to continue the opposition to this unnecessary and likely illegal expansion of Navy training over our quiet corner of the country. Illegal because the Navy itself, in a joint memorandum with the Forest Service back in the 70s, established that they cannot use FS land if there is an alternative available. The FS and Navy continues to ignore this fundamental legally binding document and allow the expansion of the use of Navy planes over the edge of the Olympic National Park and it’s ecology of quiet. The upshot is that it is likely to cause the Navy and FS substantial taxpayer funded monies to fight this expansion against the taxpayers funding it! You can do something. Read on.

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

We would like to bring your attention to the publication of a new Navy document: the Final EIS (Environmental Impact Statement) for Northwest Training and Testing (http://nwtteis.com).  While impacts from the Growler jets, the Electronic Warfare Range, and the Northwest Training and Testing are all functionally connected, they have been separated into multiple documents covering an area from Northern California to Alaska.

The latest EIS is unlawful and fatally flawed for a number of significant reasons, listed briefly below. These are explained in detail in a Joint Memorandum by the West Coast Action Alliance and the Olympic Forest Coalition. It was sent to senior Navy officials in Washington DC and the Pacific Northwest, selected federal and state legislators and County Commissions in Northern California, Oregon and Washington, plus city councils on the north Olympic Peninsula, and a variety of other organizations and individuals. Supporting materials can be found on the WCAA web site at: http://westcoastactionalliance.org

Reasonable concerns by the public have long been ignored, and this controversy intensifies by the day. For example, Congressman Derek Kilmer requested several months ago that the Navy undertake a “neutral” sound study on the effects of jet noise over Olympic National Park, under the auspices of the Federal Interagency Committee on Aviation Noise (FICAN). But the Navy ignored his request and reconstituted an old study using data that applied to Prowler jets, which are no longer being flown and are less powerful and less noisy than Growlers. They inserted that old study in the new EIS and claimed “no significant impacts” on the soundscapes of Olympic National Park.

The reasons we believe the latest EIS is unlawful and fatally flawed are:

  • Failure to provide reasonable notice to the public
  • Failure to provide adequate comment process 
  • Failure to address functionally connected activities and their cumulative impacts
  • Failure to adequately consider impacts to Olympic National Park’s World Heritage designation 
  • Failure to wait until completion of Final EIS and Record of Decision before initiating actions 

We believe that the government should follow federal law and policy, and that it is neither unpatriotic nor unreasonable for citizens to ask them to do so.

What can you do?

  1. Read the joint memorandum and its attached letter from UNESCO on the WCAA web site;
  2. Write letters to your elected representatives; a list is here: http://westcoastactionalliance.org/location
  3. Write letters to the editors of local papers;
  4. Finally, consider making a tax-deductible donation to the Olympic Peninsula Protection Fund. Monies will be used for advocacy, outreach, and legal defense. You can use PayPal here (http://olympicforest.org/?page_id=121) or write a check to: Olympic Forest Coalition, PO Box 461, Quilcene, WA 98376.

The West Coast Action Alliance invites you to respond to this email or submit comments. However, on the advice of counsel, we cannot commit to preparing responses or answering questions in this forum.

Thank you for your time.

Sincerely,

The West Coast Action Alliance and the Olympic Forest Coalition

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