The United States Environmental Protection Agency has asked for a delay to a plan for shoreline dredging on a long-awaited United States-funded airport project in Majuro.
This comes three weeks after the the Marshall Islands EPA approved the US$15 million construction of a runway safety area at Majuro airport.
The US-funded project has been on hold since May over concerns about reef damage from dredging, and while the original site for the plan was vetoed in favor of a new location.
The US Embassy in Majuro says the US EPA has no authority to hold up the project.
But the US EPA is challenging this and calling for high-level consultation among US agencies "to allow senior-level discussion of additional opportunities to avoid and minimize impacts".
Howeverm the project manager - Pacific International Incorporated's Bobby Muller - says his company is preparing to begin construction.