Move By NOAA Fisheries Helps Pave Way For Seismic Testing In Atlantic

The fisheries office of the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA Fisheries) said Nov. 30 it has authorized five applications from companies wanting to conduct geophysical surveys in the Atlantic Ocean.

The authorizations, which came after the agency reviewed public feedback on the applications, were issued under the Marine Mammal Protection Act to “incidentally, but not intentionally, harass marine mammals to companies proposing to conduct geophysical surveys in support of hydrocarbon exploration in the Atlantic Ocean,” the agency said in a news release.

NOAA Fisheries pointed out that the U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management is responsible for permitting geophysical surveys and makes decisions about energy development in the waters of the Outer Continental Shelf.