Judge upholds Cook Inlet belugas as endangered

A federal court judge has upheld the endangered species listing of Alaska's Cook Inlet beluga whales.

The state of Alaska and others had sued to overturn the listing by the National Marine Fisheries Service.

State attorneys argued the population was recovering and the white whales did not need extra protections afforded by the Endangered Species Act. They also said the listing would hurt Alaska economically by deterring commercial fishing, oil and gas exploration and tourism.

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