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New NMFS Navy “take” permits: outrageous or reasonable?

February 11, 2013

The release of Proposed Rules to govern US Navy training and testing operations in the waters of the Atlantic, Gulf of Mexico, Southern California, and Hawaii from 2014-2019 has put the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) in the crosshairs of an outraged response from environmental groups.  NRDC, the Center for Biological Diversity, and others point […]

Feds to assess Gulf seismic surveys for MMPA compliance

June 20, 2011

Ongoing pressure from environmental groups has spurred the National Marine Fisheries Service to take a closer look at the effects of seismic surveys on whales in the Gulf of Mexico.  The Obama administration has announced that NMFS will prepare a Letter of Authorization, which will look more closely at the question of whether current seismic survey […]

First-ever lawsuit challenges Gulf of Mexico oil, gas development

February 11, 2011

For the first time, decades of oil and gas development in the Gulf of Mexico is being challenged in court, on the grounds that the noise of seismic surveys used to pinpoint oil reservoirs has a negative impact on the region’s endangered sperm whales.  A consortium of environmental groups, including the NRDC, CBD, and Sierra Club […]

AEI annual report, Ocean Noise 2009 is now available

March 15, 2010

The Acoustic Ecology Institute has published Ocean Noise 2009, the fourth in its annual series of reports reviewing new research and regulatory developments in ocean noise. AEI’s annual recaps are widely anticipated and circulated among ocean noise scientists and regulators, as well as within NGO and journalist communities. The report can be viewed or downloaded […]

NRDC, allies take Navy to court over training range near right whale habitat

January 29, 2010

The new Navy Undersea Warfare Training Range (USWTR), being planned for off the coast of northern Florida, has hit a roadblock that’s been fairly visible since the location was announced last July: environmental groups are challenging the permitting process that allows construction to commence before the Navy completes its environmental assessment of future operations there. […]

China, US Discuss LFAS in China EEZ

August 31, 2009

During bilateral meetings on maritime safety, China asked the US to phase out surveillance activity using Low-Frequency Active Sonar near its coast.  Over the past year, there have been five incidents in which Chinese ships (Naval and fishing boats) harassed the USNS Impeccable, one of two US ships equipped with LFAS, and other Navy ships. […]

AEI Annual Ocean Noise Recap for 2008 Now Available

February 18, 2009

This year, the annual Acoustic Ecology Institute Spotlight Report on recent developments in ocean noise is too large for easy viewing on a web page. So, we’ve created a pdf version that you can download (or view in your browser if you’re a glutton for punishment). [AEI: Ocean Noise 2008 (pdf, 4MB)] Here’s what you’ll […]

US Navy Agrees to Geographical Limits on LFAS

August 13, 2008

A federal district court has approved a settlement between the Navy and a NRDC-led coalition of environmental groups that will limit training missions using Low-Frequency Active Sonar to several specific regions in the Paciific Ocean. Negotiations were ordered by the court after NRDC challenged the legality of permits the Navy received which would have allowed […]