Government to sell island used as a test lab

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Researchers since the 1950s have studied dangerous animal diseases on Plum Island, N.Y., that if unleashed could imperil the nation's livestock. Cold War germ warfare testing also occurred there and for decades the U.S. Army used it as a coastal defense post.

Nevertheless, many environmentalists characterize Plum Island as a "remarkable gem" and "exemplary site for fish and wildlife" when describing its attributes.

The federal government wants to relocate the animal disease lab to Kansas and is proceeding with plans to sell the isolated, 840-acre pork chop-shaped island off the eastern tip of Long Island, a move that has some environmentalists fretting about Plum Island's future.

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