On August 26, 2003, the Navy's permit to deploy harmful low-frequency active sonar was revoked by a federal judge. This is a major victory in the battle to protect whales and other marine life from high intensity sources of noise pollution in the ocean.
The Navy's use of high intensity active sonar has been suspected
in several incidents of marine mammal beachings and deaths. The
most recent incident occurred in May 2003 in the San Juan Islands
near Washington. A total of 11 harbor porpoises died after Navy
testing of mid-frequency sonar in the nearby Haro Strait.
While the defeat of low-frequency sonar use by the Navy is a
positive development in the campaign to end noise pollution, there
are still many other sources of damaging noise, such as
mid-frequency sonar and offshore seismic testing to look for oil
and gas, which are still in widespread use.
The ocean is an amazing place and we
are committed to protecting the many threatened animals that live
there. To that end, we will continue to fight against dangerous
threats such as noise pollution, seismic testing, offshore drilling
for oil and gas and continued commercial whaling.