delware environmental institute

News Journal: Periscopes up on Navy plan to expand training area

News Journal: Periscopes up on Navy plan to expand training area

With its eye on likely future threats, the Navy wants to increase mine warfare and anti-submarine training and gain approval for all training across a wide stretch of the North Atlantic Ocean.

Delaware’s environmental officials and special interest groups say the jury’s still out on whether that’s a good idea.

The concerns range from whether closer-to-shore training could interfere with ship navigation or wind farm development or, in deeper waters, could interfere with the harvesting of sand for beach replenishment or harm migrating marine mammals.

The Navy has filed a draft Environmental Impact Statement that makes its case for the enlarged training area and spells out how the service will balance that need with environmental stewardship. Training has occurred all over the North Atlantic, but recent directives have created additional demands for environmental compliance.