Quote from Navy's web site:
The Department of the Navy has prepared and filed with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency a Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (Draft SEIS) to provide additional analysis of potential environmental consequences associated with the construction and operation of an Outlying Landing Field (OLF) to support Field Carrier Landing Practice (FCLP) operations of F/A-18 E/F (Super Hornet) aircraft squadrons stationed at Naval Air Station (NAS) Oceana, Virginia and Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS) Cherry Point, North Carolina.
Federal, state, and local agencies, as well as interested parties, are invited and encouraged to participate in reviewing and commenting on the Draft SEIS. A PDF version of the Draft SEIS, and other related documents can be viewed under SEIS Documents.
All comments must be received or mailed/postmarked by May 7, 2007.
To view full documents visit:
Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Study (DSEIS)
released Friday, February 23, 2007
Public comment period, which includes:
Both public hearings and written comments will be for 60 days
All comments must be received or mailed/postmarked by May 7, 2007
It is extremely important to be asking questions, statement do not require a rsponse, questions do.
Each speaker’s comments will be limited to three (3) minutes.
If a longer statement is to be presented, it should be summarized at the public hearing and the full text submitted in writing.
Mail written comments to:
Commander, Naval Facilities Engineering Command Atlantic
Attn: OLF SEIS Project Manager, Code EV21
6506 Hampton Blvd., Norfolk, Virginia 23508-1278
Fax written comments to:
OLF SEIS Project Manager, Code EV21
Opening information session: 4:30 pm to 6:30 pm
Formal public hearing: 7:00 PM to 10:00 PM
Dates for Public Hearings:
Monday, March 19, 2007: Swan Quarter, NC - Hyde County
60 Juniper Bay Rd., Mattamuskeet Elementary School
Tuesday, March 20, 2007: Windsor, NC - Bertie County
715 US Hwy. 13 N., Bertie High School
Wednesday, March 21, 2007: Hertford, NC - Perquimans County
305 Edenton Rd., Perquimans County High School
Thursday, March 22, 2007 - New Bern, NC - Craven County
Orringer Hall, 800 College Court, Craven County Community College
Tuesday, April 3, 2007 - Washington, NC - Beaufort County
5337 US Hwy. 264 E., Beaufort Community College
Wednesday, April 4, 2007 - Plymouth, NC - Washington County
207 Research Station Rd., Vernon James Research Center
Tuesday, April 12, 2007 - 501 S. College Street - Convention Center - Ballroom A - Charlotte, NC
* Dates subject to change at Navy's request *
Please stay alert and remain vigilant concerning the
upcoming events that will soon transpire.
Your participation is critical as we continue to work together to
protect the Albemarle/ Pamlico Peninsula and our military pilots.
"Talking Points" that may be helpful in composing a 3-minute presentation at the OLF Public Hearings, letters to newspapers, politicians, etc.
For the Public Hearing presentations:
1. Keep it to 3 minutes
2. Sign up to speak when you arrive
3. Do not be concerned that others have already made your points, or that you do not know all the facts
4. Put your points in terms of questions you are asking the Navy to address
5. Remember that this is your opportunity – and right – to be heard
Below are samples of questions to address concerning the DSEIS during the Navy's OLF public hearing(s) and comment session composed by Ernie Marshall, the No-OLF is grateful for Ernie for taking the time to compose these question.
1. Why has the Navy not open-mindedly considered a full range of options for locating an OLF, including sites in Virginia, already existing military sites, and those suggested by North Carolina representatives and environmentalists?
2. Why has the Navy not justified the need for building an additional OLF? By the Navy’s own admission it now has sufficient training facilities.
3. By the Navy’s own statements (Admiral Natter) their reason for wanting to locate an OLF in eastern North Carolina is to mitigate aircraft noise near Fentress Field to satisfy complaints from Virginia residents. Does the Navy actually believe that this is an appropriate, rational, and sufficient reason to create an OLF in Washington and Beaufort Counties?
4. Has the Navy done comparative cost studies on different possible locations for an OLF? Where are these studies to be found? If not, why not? It is our tax dollars.
5. Why does the Navy think its doing a one-year and very limited bird study gives it an adequate basis for understanding the behavior and movements of wintering waterfowl? Why has it ignored the decades of thorough study of this subjects by wildlife biologists? How can it have the presumption to improve on this data and conclusions with such limited time, expertise, and resources committed to the project?
6. The Navy makes various claims about how the considerable noise levels created by constant Super Hornet traffic will not significantly affect the birds? Where are the thorough, independent scientific studies to support such self-serving conjectures?
7. Who are the wildlife biologists that the Navy has hired to do its bird behavior studies? What are their professional credentials? What exactly is their relationship with the Navy? How much is the Navy paying them for their work?
8. Independent experts have rated the Beaufort-Washington Counties proposed OLF site the most hazardous for aircraft bird strikes on the East Coast (and second to the Puget Sound area the most hazardous in North America). Why has not this consideration ruled out this site from the outset?
9. The Navy’s notion of "wildlife management" is incredibly naïve. Wildlife management, as practiced now for a century by our U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has to do with maintaining, stabilizing, and increasing a wildlife population rather than the opposite. Does the Navy seriously believe that fireworks and dogs, method perhaps suitable for running a flock of geese off a golf course, will be effective in controlling the movements of 200,000 waterfowl? Are we to take such suggestions seriously?
10. How is it that the Navy on the one hand claims that jet noise will not disturb Tundra Swans and Snow Geese, but that barking dogs and popping firecrackers will?
11. The Navy also proposed to killed the birds that pose a threat to their planes and pilots, apparently admitting that other methods for controlling them are ill-considered and ineffective. It proposes shooting them and poisoning them. What will be its method of distributing these poisons and controlling its effects? What poisons will be used and what exactly is known about them? What scientific studies on them have been done? In what amounts will they be used? Where will they be used? What is know about the effects of these poisons on humans and other animals, and on children and pregnant mothers? How are we to be assured that such poisons will not subject humans, pets, and farm animals to serious health risks? And what makes the Navy think that they have the right to subject us to those health risks?
12. What studies has the Navy done to determine which Endangered and Threatened Species are in the vicinity of the OLF site and what effects the OLF will have these populations?
13. What measures does the Navy plan to take to protect the Red Wolfs that populate the OLF site area, including a pair that are apparently denning at Ground Zero? This Red Wolf is the first species declared extinct in the wild that has been successfully reestablished in the wild as part of a U. S. Fish and Wildlife program ongoing on the Albemarle-Pamlico Peninsula.
14. A considerable pollution problem will occur from waste jet fuel on and near the OLF site. What studies has the Navy conducted on this problem and how to deal with it? This pollution can be expected to pollute stream, well water, and other water sources with cancer-causing agents. What will be done to prevent this?
15. What plan does the Navy have in place for compensating the inhabitants of the region for the tremendous economic loss that will come with the environmental degradation brought by the OLF, destruction of farm land, loss of tax revenues, loss of tourism and recreation, loss of real estate values, etc.?
Additional help with writing comments to give to the Navy's OLF Public Hearings. It takes three minutes to read. Feel free to use this if you find it helpful.
Suggestions are to put your comments in the form of questions and "speak from the heart" (don't be overly concerned about conering the facts). You sign up to speak when you come in the door and are alotted 3 minutes.
Comment gather from an earlier event:Have a written copy to leave at the hearing (or mail it in by the deadline), and please also mail a copy to Senators Dole and Burr, your local newspaper, etc.
Comments Concerning Navy OLF Draft SEIS
1. Given that the proposed Navy Washington-Beaufort County OLF site is such an inappropriate location because of it will displace over 100 farm families from their land and livelihoods and because it will put pilots in training at considerable risk of deadly midair collisions with waterfowl, what possible reasons can there be for the choice of this site, other than tactical convenience and political pressure, that would justify it as a rational choice? No such reasons are forthcoming in the Draft SEIS.
2. It is evident from the Draft SEIS that in choosing the Washington-Beaufort County site for the proposed OLF the Navy has obviously not seriously considered a range of other possibilities. Why is the Navy determined not to take an open-minded view of the matter and to stubbornly stick by a plainly mistaken choice?
3. Why does even the Supplemental EIS not seriously address the magnitude of the problem it faces in choosing the Washington-Beaufort County site created by the fact that area, indeed the entire region of the Pamlico-Albemarle Peninsula, has for centuries, if not millions of years, been a major wintering ground for North America’s waterfowl populations?
4. Since bating on the refuge and planting alternate crops such as cotton are obviously ineffectual methods of keeping planes and birds apart, the Navy will have to resort to killing large numbers of waterfowl. This much is admitted in the Draft SEIS. How does the Navy propose to get around the violation of state, national, and international laws that will require and the outcry of public opinion that will surely ensue ?
5. Why has the Navy hired its own biologists to do the Draft SEIS – which surely makes their process suspect – when there are decades of federal government waterfowl population, movement, and distribution studies already available, most notably those of the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service? Since when is the Department of the Navy rather than the Department of the Interior the expert on wildlife matters?
6. Why does the Navy’s attitude, as evinced in the Draft SEIS, continue to regard rural, agricultural eastern North Carolina as "essentially in the middle of nowhere" and the interests of metropolitan Virginia residents as of far greater importance?
7. Why does the Navy continue to wave the flag and cite "the War on Terrorism" as its vindication for its choice of the Washington County OLF site, both in the press and the Draft SEIS, when it is clear than the Iraq War is not a war in which fighter bombers have much of a role and the money involved could be much better spent in supporting the war effort?