Environmental law firm Earthjustice said a federal judge has issued an order confirming that no live-fire training can occur at Makua Military Reservation until the Army completes new studies on the potential impact to marine resources and on the risk to cultural sites.
Earthjustice said this morning in a press release that U.S. District Chief Judge Susan Oki Mollway issued the order Wednesday.
"Last year, the Army said it wanted to keep open the option of conducting live-fire training at Makua," said Earthjustice attorney David Henkin, who represents community group Malama Makua. "Yesterday’s order makes clear that the court will hold the Army to the promise it made in 2001 that it would first complete these important studies before any live-fire training can occur."
Mollway, Earthjustice said, previously found that not conducting the studies violated two court-ordered settlements with Malama Makua, a Waianae Coast community group that first sued the Army in 1998 to force a comprehensive review of the impacts of military training at Makua.
"We have been waiting over a decade for the Army to make good on its promises to conduct meaningful studies to let us know if military training at Makua is poisoning the food that we put on the table to feed our keiki (children) and to identify cultural sites that military training threatens to destroy," said Malama Makua president Sparky Rodrigues. "We’re pleased that the court will be now be keeping tabs on the Army to make sure we finally get accurate information about the harm to public health and cultural sites that military training at Makua can cause."