WDC Publishes Report on Renewable Energy and Cetaceans

The Whale and Dolphin Conservation has published a report entitled:  Marine Renewable Energy: A Global Review of the Extent of Marine Renewable Energy Developments, the Developing Technologies and Possible Conservation Implications for Cetaceans.

The report pulls together all the current information on the impacts of marine renewable developments on cetaceans, and different countries approaches to these developments. The report is aimed at helping governments, developers and other key parties in the marine renewable energy industry to make the best-informed decisions as to where and how to site their facilities.

To download the report, or for German and Spanish Executive summaries, Click here for to WDC website.

1 comment. Leave a Reply

  1. Gavin Banks

    The Whale and Dolphin Conservation Society states on their website: “The noise from the pile driving process has the potential to cause the most harm to cetaceans, including physical injury. The sound of this industrial work can carry for many tens of kilometres under water. At distances of 30-40 kilometres, research has shown that the noise could be strong enough to mask the communication of harbour porpoises and bottlenose dolphins can also be affected behaviourally within this kind of distance”.

    1. Windfarm installers have mitigation measures in place to prevent loud sound exposures to marine mammals. This is “conveniently” ommitted from WDC comments.
    2. “Masking”, or overlap of sounds used for communication, does not equate to physical injury.
    3. In a recent Federal Register note, the NMFS made the following statemement regarding seismic air guns: “Researchers have studied Temporary Threshold Shift (TTS) in certain captive odontocetes and pinnipeds exposed to strong sounds (reviewed in Southall et al., 2007). However, there has been no specific documentation of TTS let alone permanent hearing damage, i.e., permanent threshold shift (PTS), in free-ranging marine mammals exposed to sequences of airgun pulses during realistic field conditions.”

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