Final Proposal Will Allow Seismic Blasting in the Atlantic

Written by on February 28, 2014 in Policy & Ocean Law
Image courtesy of Oceana.

Image courtesy of Oceana.

The decision has been made. Yesterday, February 27, the US government released a final proposal to allow the use of seismic airguns off the East Coast.

Oceana has been fighting to stop the use of seismic airguns for long time. Earlier this month, MST spoke with Oceana to learn more about their efforts to persuade the Obama administration to use the best available science in the Environmental Impact Statement.

“By failing to consider relevant science, the Obama administration’s decision could be a death sentence for many marine mammals, and needlessly turning the Atlantic Ocean into a blast zone,” Jacqueline Savitz, Vice President for U.S. Oceans at Oceana said in a news release.

Because offshore drilling in the Atlantic won’t be allowed for at least four more years, Savitz said “There is absolutely no justification for failing to include the best available science in this decision.”

North Atlantic right whale mother and calf off the coast of Georgia.

North Atlantic right whale mother and calf off the coast of Georgia. Photo credit: Georgia Wildlife Resources Division via photopin cc.

Here are a few key facts about seismic blasting to keep in mind:

  • The proposed area is twice the size of California.
  • It could cause injury to 138,500 whales and dolphins and 13.5 million disturbances in vital behaviors of marine mammals.
  • It could kill fish eggs and larvae and scare fish away from important habitats.
  • It would put more than 730,000 jobs at risk.

Copyright © 2014 by Marine Science Today, a publication of Marine Science Today LLC.

About the Author

About the Author: Emily Tripp is the Publisher and Editor of MarineScienceToday.com. She holds marine science and biology degrees from the University of Miami's Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science and a Master of Advanced Studies degree in Marine Biodiversity and Conservation from Scripps Institution of Oceanography. When she's not writing about marine science, she's probably running around outside or playing with her dog. .

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