A recent National Geographic Daily News article is entitled: “Study: Planning Can Protect Whales in Seismic Surveys.” This article states:
“Whale experts have teamed up with the oil and gas industry to develop a step-by-step guide for reducing the impacts of noise pollution from marine seismic surveys on whales and other marine species.The paper, published in the current issue of the journal Aquatic Mammals, was the result of a collaboration between scientists with the Switzerland-based International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN)’s Western Gray Whale Advisory Panel and the Russian consortium, Sakhalin Energy Investment.”
“The new study outlines a series of procedures that Nowacek and his team developed to protect western gray whales during seismic surveys conducted near Sakhalin Island, located on the Russian coast just north of Japan, from 2006 to 2012. The region harbors huge oil and gas reserves, but it is also an important feeding area for the whales, which are listed as critically endangered on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. The area is being developed by Sakhalin Energy, which is a consortium that includes the Russian company Gazprom, Royal Dutch Shell, and the Japanese companies Mitsui and Mitsubishi.”
The National Geographic article has some good news about Sakhalin whale populations:
“Carl Gustaf Lundin, director of the global marine and polar program at IUCN, said the tiny population of western gray whales affected by Sakhalin Energy’s surveys grew about 3 percent a year, to 140 individuals, during the survey period. That indicates the monitoring and mitigation efforts are working.”
Click here to read article.