One of the biggest problems facing the new Code that was identified by many stakeholders in the 2015/2016 review was the need to reduce the level of prescription in the Code and increase the flexibility for operators to use various emerging technologies. Either for detecting marine mammals, or for replacing airguns as the seismic source, these technologies may be more protective of marine mammals and can be used with fewer restrictions for seismic surveys.
To identify possible mechanisms for incorporating technologies that may not yet exist into the Code, two workshops were convened in 2015 by DOC in partnership with the Marine Mammal Observer Association (MMOA), with additional support at the second meeting from the Wild Earth Foundation.
- The first workshop, held in conjunction with the 29th European Cetacean Society annual conference, discussed the various emerging technologies and techniques.
- The second, held in conjunction with the 21st Society for Marine Mammalogy biennial conference, focused more on potential mechanisms for assessing their effectiveness so that some sort of performance standards could be integrated into the Code.
The workshops attracted over 60 (ECS) and 50 (SMM) individuals from government, industry, environmental non-governmental organisations, environmental consultants, marine mammal observers, passive acoustic monitoring operators and academics from biology and acoustics.
New mitigation methods and evolving acoustic exposure guidelines (PDF, 2,380K)
Report of the first workshop as part of the ECS Special Publication Series
Incorporating new mitigation technologies into guidelines for seismic surveys and other underwater acoustic activities: producing performance standards (PDF, 886K)
Report of the second workshop, published by DOC as part of the review of the Code