Proposed US energy rules would shield whales

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Associated Press

Posted on February 27, 2014 at 1:34 PM

Updated Thursday, Feb 27 at 3:01 PM

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Federal officials are outlining proposed measures to shield endangered whales if seismic testing for oil and gas deposits is allowed along the Atlantic coast from Delaware to Florida.

The measures are contained in the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management's final environmental impact statement released Thursday. The so-called mitigation measures would include an exclusionary zone along the main migratory route for the endangered North Atlantic right whale, as well as other proposals intended to limit the impact on sea life.

The energy industry is seeking the testing to update nearly four-decade-old data on oil and gas deposits off the coast.

Environmental groups contend marine life should not be subjected to a blast zone.

After the Gulf of Mexico oil disaster in 2010, the government delayed Atlantic energy exploration.

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