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Firm sues state, claims violation of Endangered Species Act

August 24, 2017 - 5:07pm

HONOLULU — A nonprofit firm has filed a lawsuit against Hawaii that claims the lights at several state-operated airports are harming imperiled seabirds.

The Honolulu Star-Advertiser reports Earthjustice filed the suit Wednesday on behalf of multiple conservation groups. The groups claim the state is in violation of the Endangered Species Act.

Earthjustice states the state Department of Transportation has failed to address injuries and deaths of three species of seabirds at airports and harbors on Kauai, Maui and Lanai.

The birds listed in the suit are the threatened Newell’s shearwater and the endangered Hawaiian petrels and band-rumped storm petrels.

The groups claim seabirds are attracted to the bright lights, but become disoriented and circle around them, then fall to the ground from exhaustion or crash into nearby buildings.

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