Thanks to our intern Ava for writing a great LTE.
Editor: I recently attended a public hearing on the proposed seismic blasting held by the Division of Coastal Management. I was able to listen to comments from concerned locals, scientists, and advocates who strongly oppose seismic blasting off the coast of our state.
Seismic blasting works by releasing pressurized air blasts to produce powerful sound waves through the ocean. These air gun blasts create some of the loudest sources of noise pollution in ocean.
These explosions are repeated every 10-12 seconds for weeks up to months. Just imagine an air horn going off right beside your ear thousands of times per day. Seismic blasting harms countless marine species by disorienting, deafening, injuring, or even killing them. Studies have shown a substantial decline in fish, shellfish, and zooplankton populations which are crucial to marine ecosystems.
Major declines in fish populations on the Crystal Coast would greatly cause the supply of fish to restaurants and fisheries to drop. Jacksonville’s local economy would be negatively affected by the loss of jobs and business that the fishing industry supports.
Seismic blasting is the first step toward offshore drilling which is not economically efficient nor safe for marine environments. The Division of Coastal Management was created to protect our coasts, not risk communities’ economic livelihood or harm NC’s unique marine life. As citizens of NC, we must speak out against this risky proposal that threatens our home.
Please consider submitting a written comment opposing the seismic blasting proposal. Comments can be emailed to DCMComments@ncdenr.gov.
Crystal Coast Waterkeeper