References to naval sonar cut from report on mass whale stranding

Sonar who? A federal government report on the stranding of 37 whales on North Carolina’s Outer Banks last year conspicuously fails to mention the possible influence of naval sonar. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration investigator Teri Rowles says that although she initially suggested loud blasts of sound from active sonar might have factored into injuries to seven whales, she removed these mentions later on because sonar was just one of several possible causes. The Natural Resources Defense Council thinks it’s a fishy redaction, as the Navy is currently holding public hearings on building an underwater sonar training range in the same area. The second draft of the report “seems a lot more like spin than science,” says NRDC attorney Andrew Wetzler. The eco-advocacy group sued in federal court to get the investigator’s first draft released.