Richard Moore's letter to the Navy about the OLF

Here is a letter state Treasurer Richard Moore sent to the Navy about the OLF:

Dear Commander:

The Navy’s proposed site for an outlying landing field (OLF) in Washington County has long been a serious concern for North Carolinians. As a member of the Council of State and as a hunter, I believe it is important for me to speak out on this issue.

Here in North Carolina, we are fiercely supportive of our military. Our men and women in uniform are a great part of the tradition and culture of our state. But while we support the military, we need to ensure that any decision made on the OLF is done in a comprehensive and careful fashion. That simply doesn’t appear to be the case so far.

The courts have found that the Navy failed to complete a proper environmental assessment of the project. The Navy must recognize and take into account the risks to the safety of our pilots, the needs of the families that will be displaced by this project, and the impact to a wildlife refuge that serves tens of thousands of migratory birds. It is incomprehensible to consider Navy jets flying 30,000 flights within 3 ½ miles of a major wintering ground for North America’s birds. Military bird-strike experts have determined that there is a high possibility for collisions. Scientific experts, including the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, have determined that this project would be in direct conflict with the mission of a wildlife sanctuary.

The simple fact is that this has the potential to be an environmental disaster. The Navy needs to reconsider its decision that the Beaufort-Washington County site is the best choice for this airstrip. This is not the right site for our State or for the Navy.

Sincerely, Richard H. Moore

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