Monday is residents’ last chance to submit comments on the Navy’s plans for its training and testing activities in the region.
Last month, the Navy released a final version of its Mariana Islands Training and Testing Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement/Overseas Environmental Impact Statement.
The document outlines the Navy’s plans for its continued, and increased, training and testing activities in the region, its impacts on the environment and its attempts to minimize the negative effects.
A draft version of the statement was released last year. The Navy held a public comment period through April 2019, which fielded much criticism toward the military’s proposal.
The document states that marine mammals, marine habitats, sea turtles, marine vegetation, fishes may experience consequences from Navy activity, some effects ranging from temporary stress to death, according to the document.
The Navy’s activities will also intermittently restrict some air and water space, which will reduce access for fishermen and divers, such as at Area W-517, waters south of Guam, according to the document.
Out of the 96 proposed activities listed in the document, ranging from sonar use to explosive testing, 33 will increase in frequency while 29 will decrease. Four of these activities are newly proposed for the region: surface ship object detection, unmanned underwater vehicle training, radar and other system testing and simulant testing.
The Navy will make a final decision on the plan after Monday.
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