Lawyers for the state of Nevada are in a federal courtroom seeking an injunction that would at least temporarily prohibit the U.S. Energy Department from shipping weapons-grade plutonium from South Carolina to a security site north of Las Vegas.

Chief Deputy Attorney General Wayne Howell told a judge in Reno Thursday that the U.S. government has failed to do the required environmental reviews and provide information necessary to ensure the plutonium shipments pose no threat to public safety or the environment.

Department lawyers insist they'll comply with all laws but that the potential transportation routes and other details are classified information.

Judge Miranda Du hasn't indicated which way she'll rule or when. She says Energy Department officials appear to be arguing that they know what they are doing so the state should trust them.

Judge Du cited "the urgency of the matter" in denying the agency's request to postpone the hearing. 

The government is under a court order to move the material out of a refining complex in South Carolina by 2020.

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