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Thursday, March 15, 2012 - 3:00am

Case Pits Navy Vs. Endangered Whales

Updated: 2 years ago.
A U.S. District Court judge was scheduled to hear arguments in the lawsuit Thursday in Brunswick where environmental groups say plans for an offshore range for military training poses threats to endangered right whales. (Photo Courtesy of idnas71 via Flickr.)

The U.S. Navy is heading to court in Georgia, where environmental groups say plans for an offshore range for military training poses threats to endangered right whales.

A U.S. District Court judge was scheduled to hear arguments in the lawsuit Thursday in Brunswick. Both sides argue the case should be decided in their favor without a full trial.

Environmental groups want to stop the Navy from building a $100 million range to train submarines, airplanes and warships 75 miles offshore from Georgia and Florida.

Opponents say that's too close to waters used by right whales each winter to give birth. Only about 400 of the rare whales remain.

The Navy says it already takes precautions to avoid harming whales and the judge should strongly consider its needs for military readiness.

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