Thursday, June 11, 2009

Navy Makes Decision on Cherry Point Range Complex

WASHINGTON (NNS) -- The assistant secretary of the Navy for installations and environment has signed the record of decision (ROD) for the Navy Cherry Point Range Complex Environmental Impact Statement/Overseas Environmental Impact Statement (EIS/OEIS), which evaluated potential environmental effects associated with training and research, development, test and evaluation (RDT&E) activities.

The Navy Cherry Point Range Complex is one of several range complexes on the east coast.

Signing of the ROD marks the Navy's completion of the Navy Cherry Point EIS/OEIS process. The Navy Cherry Point Range Complex Final EIS/OEIS provides the results of environmental analysis associated with Navy's Atlantic Fleet and U.S. Marine Corps training; RDT&E activities; and associated range capabilities enhancements (including infrastructure improvements) within the existing Navy Cherry Point Range Complex.

The EIS/OEIS evaluated the potential environmental impacts of three alternatives. The ROD reflects the Navy's decision to implement Alternative 2, which will increase operational training, expand warfare missions, accommodate force structure changes (including training resulting from the introduction of new platforms) and implement enhancements.

Alternative 2 also includes the designation of two mine warfare training areas in Onslow Bay for enhanced mine countermeasures and neutralization training.

In addition, the Navy will eliminate the use of bombs with explosive (live) warheads during at-sea bombing exercise training events.

The Navy Cherry Point Range Complex Final EIS/OEIS is one of the environmental documents the Navy has prepared for its range complexes. These documents are part of a $100 million environmental compliance effort begun in 2004 to ensure the Navy has the training ranges it needs to provide combat-capable forces ready to deploy worldwide in America's defense and that the valuable natural resources on these ranges are afforded protection.

The Navy trains its deploying forces in the most realistic manner possible. This record of decision will allow the Navy to continue giving Sailors the skills they need to be effective in combat.

The ROD, as well as the EIS/OEIS and supporting documents, are available to the public online at