The Center for Biological Diversity, an environmental group, has filed a notice of its intent to sue the Secretary of the Interior for allegedly allowing oil and gas drilling in the Gulf of Mexico in violation of the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) and the Endangered Species Act (ESA). The May 14, 2010, notice letter alleges that seismic exploration surveys and drilling operations can harm marine mammals, including endangered species, such as sperm whales, and consequently require approvals, under the MMPA and ESA, from the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) or the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. The group also argues that the ESA requires an “incidental take permit” approved by NMFS, if harm to threatened or endangered species is anticipated by the activity. None of the required approvals has been obtained, according to the notice letter. The agency has 60 days to respond before the group can pursue litigation against it in federal court.