By John Ostapkovich
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The US Third Circuit Court of Appeals is considering a request to halt the deepening of the Delaware River shipping channel, already underway.
The basic argument to stop the $360-million project, argued to be critical to bringing new, larger ships upriver, is that the US Army Corps of Engineers didn’t pay enough attention to opponents’ various concerns.
“And here they said, basically, ‘We’re going to blast first, we’re going to dredge first, we’re going to ask questions later, if at all,” Jane Davenport (right), lawyer for the Riverkeeper Network, said outside the federal courthouse in Philadelphia after today’s hearing.
Pro-dredging attorneys argued in court that they have been compiling studies, and studies of studies, for years, in some cases where opponents were stalling, and the Corps of Engineers finally exercised its authority to move ahead.
Two other attorneys, one pro-dredging, the other against, declined to comment outside of court.