The U.S. Navy has been using our oceans as a staging ground for target practice for more than 30 years -- leaching highly toxic and cancer-causing chemicals into the sea. This practice, known as SINKEX, is currently exempt from laws that protect marine life from dangerous substances.
But that could change this month because the Environmental Protection Agency is considering revoking this exemption.
Through SINKEX, the Navy uses old warships for torpedo and gunnery practice -- sinking the old vessels at sea. In the past decade alone, the Navy has disposed of more than 100 vessels through this program.
Old ships contain toxic materials, including polychlorinated biphenyls, or PCBs. PCBs have been banned in the United States since 1979 because they're known to cause cancer. When the ships are sunk, these chemicals leak into the ocean and harm all levels of the food web, including fish, whales and dolphins.
Tell the EPA that our oceans are not a toxic waste dump and that the Navy should dispose of old war ships in a safe, responsible manner.
April 23, 2013 Action Alert ID# 89
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