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Groups give notice they will sue to protect beluga whales

In this photo taken Aug. 25, 2017, provided by NOAA Fisheries, a newborn beluga whale calf sticks its head out of the water in upper Cook Inlet, Alaska. (NOAA Fisheries via AP)

By DAN JOLING
Associated Press
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) – Two environmental groups have given formal notice that they intended to sue the U.S. government over its failure to protect an endangered population of beluga whales in Alaska from problems related to oil and gas drilling. The Center for Biological Diversity and Cook Inletkeeper said they will sue the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration for not adequately protecting Cook Inlet belugas. The groups contend the agency has authorized petroleum company activity that harms whales despite their declining numbers. The groups say the agency should not allow any harassment or other harm to the whales to ensure their recovery. An agency spokeswoman says officials don’t comment on pending litigation.

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