The Evidence for Environmental Effects from Seismic Survey Sound: What to Mitigate, Monitor, and Regulate, and Why?
Event name: 80th EAGE Conference & Exhibition 2018 Workshop Programme
Session: WS14: The Effect of Seismic Surveys on the Marine Environment
Publication date: 15 June 2018
Info: Extended abstract, PDF ( 376.14Kb )
Price: € 20
Seismic surveys are now subject to an increasing number of precautionary environmental risk mitigation measures ranging from pre-survey risk modeling to visual and acoustic monitoring for marine life, and even exclusion from some areas, shutdowns, and more. The scientific support is often inferred indirectly from other sound sources due to a lack of data on seismic sound itself. Direct injury from sound was an early concern (Finneran, 2015; NOAA 2016). But as concern about injury diminishes, attention has shifted more toward effects on behavior and health. The biological consequence of such disruptions is usually expressed in population terms, including effects on commercially exploited species. The initial regulatory response was to place observers on seismic ships and to move or shut down the source when protected marine animals were detected nearby. The logistic and financial burdens of these added obligations have become part of an increased cost of exploration. More recent regulatory responses such as closing areas to seismic surveys or seeking alternative sound source technologies offer even greater technical and financial challenges to the industry.