(AP) — Opponents of a giant telescope planned for Mauna Kea on Hawaii Island are appealing the state land board’s approval of the project’s construction permit.

Richard Wurdeman, an attorney representing some of the opponents, filed a notice of appeal with the state Supreme Court on Monday.

The Board of Land and Natural Resources approved a construction permit in September for the Thirty Meter Telescope. Opponents of the $1.4 billion project say it will desecrate land sacred to some Native Hawaiians, while supporters say it will provide educational and economic opportunities.

An artist’s rendering of the proposed Thirty Meter Telescope. Thirty Meter Telescope

The opponents appealed directly to the state Supreme Court because of a law that allows certain contested-case hearing decisions to bypass the Intermediate Court of Appeals.

Kealoha Pisciotta, one of the leaders fighting the telescope, says other participants opposing the project are expected to also file appeals this week.

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