The United States military is considering the Commonwealth of the Northern Marianas Islands for an explosive training site.
Two areas in CNMI namely Tinian and Pagan are being explored as potential sites for live explosive training as part of the U.S.’ military build up in the Pacific.
But oppositions on CNMI have expressed concerns about potential environmental damage and access to areas with cultural significance such as Pagan.
The U.S. military eyed CNMI as a potential location for the Marines training site as Guam and Hawaii are reportedly at capacity.
Major Neal Fisher Marines Public Affairs Officer on Guam told Radio New Zealand that an environmental impact report will be prepared over the next year and if live-fire activity have a severe impact on CNMI, cost they will return to the drawing board.
A Guam Pacific Daily News report indicates that the U.S. military restructure in the Pacific costs $12.1 billion, but the military cannot provide accurate cost information to budget makers until environmental studies including negotiations with host nations such as Guam and the CNMI are complete.