State officials in Hawaii say they will leave undetonated World War II ordnance found near a state seabird sanctuary and popular tourist destination in place until a non-explosive removal option is found.
Two World War II-era explosives were found off the Molokini Crater at the Molokini Marine Life Conservation District, about 3 miles off the southwestern coast of Maui.
The crater was used for bombing practice after the U.S. entered the war. It is now a protected marine habitat and a popular site for snorkeling and diving.
Munitions have previously been found at the crater and detonated in place, but local residents and environmental groups warned that the location of the explosives could cause irreversible damage to coral reefs, ocean life and the island by the crater.
The state’s Department of Land and Natural Resources conferred with Army officials before making the decision. The agency said the explosives would be left in place until new technology and methods allow the non-explosive removal of the explosives.