In response to the Washington Post editorial, "Debate over seismic air guns should wait until science has spoken," NOIA along with the American Petroleum Institute (API), the International Association of Geophysical Contractors (IAGC) and the Independent Petroleum Association of America (IPAA) issued the following letter to the editor:
The Nation Cannot Afford to Delay Atlantic Seismic
Evidence from decades of worldwide seismic surveying activity and research has shown it causes no injury to marine mammals (“Debate over seismic air guns should wait until science has spoken,” Sept. 5). In fact, last year in the Federal Register, the Administration acknowledged that, “there is no evidence that serious injury, death, or stranding by marine mammals can occur from exposure to airgun pulses.” Based on scientific evidence and federal approval of thousands of similar permits over the years, seismic surveying in the Atlantic would hardly be uncharted territory.
Contrary to your claim, Obama did not “clear the way” in 2010 for energy development along the East Coast. The administration is considering permitting seismic surveys in a portion of the Atlantic, but its 5-Year Leasing Plan keeps the area closed until at least 2017, along with nearly 87 percent of our Outer Continental Shelf.
Also, the legal settlement in the Gulf of Mexico you cite as reason for delay in the Atlantic impacts only limited areas. Properly permitted surveys may continue in the vast majority of the Gulf.
Additional study is certainly welcome, but it would be foolish to ignore decades of experience and the prospect of significant domestic resources in this time of international energy instability.
President & CEO
American Petroleum Institute (API)
National Ocean Industries Association (NOIA)
International Association of Geophysical Contractors (IAGC)
President & CEO
Independent Petroleum Association of America (IPAA)