Management of Arctic Marine Oil and Gas Associated Noise

The continuation of Arctic marine oil and gas activities requires a better understanding of the sources of noise and the effects and potential effects of noise on marine mammals and fish. Of critical interest to Indigenous Peoples is how this noise affects or potentially affects their subsistence activities. Thus, determining how to avoid or mitigate these potential effects would be useful.

PAME has worked on noise in the Arctic Ocean from shipping and this can be utilized as a resource. However, there are other non-vessel sources of noise from offshore oil and gas operations that should be considered.  

Arctic oil and gas activities contribute noise to the marine environment from the exploration through to decommissioning phases with such possible sources as:  vessel traffic, seismic surveys, ice-breaker operations, trenching, drilling, production, and decommissioning operations.

There is significant scientific knowledge and Indigenous Knowledge on the effects of noise on Arctic marine biota. PAME will consider current practices to manage Arctic marine oil and gas associated noise, to reduce potential effects on marine biota and associated subsistence activities.

Leads: United States, UK, WWF

Project Objectives

Taking stock of the practices for noise reduction or elimination related to offshore or nearshore oil and gas operations in the Arctic. The activities of concern include:
- noise from vessels (survey, supply, crew, ice management),
- ice breakers,
- drilling,
- dredging,
- coring,
- seismic (high resolution and exploration),
- piledriving,
- and decommissioning activities (explosives, manual deconstruction).

To consider if specific guidance related to noise from Arctic oil and gas operations are needed.


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