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NRDC Fails to Explain its Abuse of FACA Process
The Natural Resources Defense Council posted on its Web site NRDC's latest and longest broadside against Navy sonar. NRDC' eighty-plus page white paper claims that Navy sonar adversely affects marine mammals. Conspicuously absent from NRDC's White paper is any response to CRE's accusation that NRDC misused the FACA process on this issue. That accusation pre-dates the posting of NRDC's White Paper. That accusation was sent to NRDC before NRDC posted its White Paper.

CRE's accusation is contained in a previous FACA-Under-Fire article. The previous article questioned the propriety of NRDC's placing a trial lawyer on the Marine Mammal Commission's FACA Advisory Committee on Acoustic Impacts on Marine Mammals ("Sound Committee"). The Sound Committee is chartered to advise the MMC on the best available science regarding acoustic effects on marine mammals. The Navy also has a representative on the Sound Committee. The Navy representative is a scientist, not a trial lawyer.

After listening to the Navy's frank, candid and good-faith presentation of its data and views on this issue, NRDC used that information to sue the Navy in federal court.

CRE's previous article expressed our view that putting an NGO trial lawyer on the Sound Committee is a misuse of and threatens the FACA Committee process. Committee members cannot be frank and candid if they know that anything they say will be used against them in court

So far, NRDC has not rebutted or responded to CRE's position on this issue. If NRDC disagrees with CRE's position, then they are invited to state and explain their disagreement on the FACA Under Fire Web site.

A copy of this article has been sent to the involved NRDC trial lawyer.

  • Click here for prior article
  • Click here for NRDC White Paper

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