Protection of Marine Mammals

Protection of Marine Mammals
Case Name: 
Defenders of Wildlife, et al. v. U.S. Navy, et al.
Nature of Case: 

The Animal Welfare Institute and its co-plaintiffs brought claims against the Navy over its plans to build an Undersea Warfare Training Range southeast of the Florida/Georgia border, which has the potential to adversely affect millions of marine mammals, including the critically endangered North Atlantic right whale whose calving grounds are adjacent to the project site. The lawsuit alleges that the Navy and National Marine Fisheries Service, which authorized the project, did not adequately analyze the environmental impacts of operating the range before deciding upon construction.

Court: 
U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Georgia
Year Filed: 
2010
Plaintiffs: 
The Animal Welfare Institute; Defenders of Wildlife; The Humane Society of the United States; Whale and Dolphin Conservation Society; Natural Resources Defense Council; Center for a Sustainable Coast; Florida Wildlife Federation; South Carolina Coastal Conservation League; North Carolina Wildlife Federation; Ocean Mammal Institute; Citizens Opposing Active Sonar Threats; Cetacean Society International
Defendants: 
United States Department of the Navy; Ray Mabus (Secretary of the Navy); National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration; National Marine Fisheries Service; Gary Locke (Secretary of Commerce)
Status: 

Negotiations are on-going regarding the sufficiency of Administrative Records. Substantive briefing is expected to begin by the end of 2011.

Find out more about the background of the case, check out case media, or learn more about ocean noise.