The Trump Administration is a step closer to approving seismic airgun blasting in the Atlantic Ocean, for deep water oil and gas exploration. The directive was issued Monday, despite large opposition from Ocean Conservationists and coastal communities. Trump has given yet another gift to the oil and gas industry, following his announcement last month to expand offshore drilling in areas that are currently protected.
The blasts could harm up to 138,000 sea turtles, dolphins and whales in the area, and disrupt countless fragile ecosystems, according to the NOAA’s estimates.
A group of 75 scientists, including experts from Stanford, Duke and Cornell warned of the negative impacts that marine mammals would face including: permanent hearing loss, disruption of mating and feeding, abandonment of habitat and in worst case scenarios beach strandings. Dolphins and whales rely largely on their hearing to communicate, find food and reproduce - hearing is a matter of survival.
Michael Jasny, director of the marine mammal protection project at NRDC, said the noise created is like “throwing dynamite” into the water, calling it a “serious assault” on marine life.
Read the full article from NRDC here.
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