Don’t Let Big Oil Deafen Marine Mammals


Target: Mike Celata, Regional Director, Gulf of Mexico Region, Bureau of Ocean Energy Management 

Goal: Stop oil and gas companies from doing unnecessary seismic blasting that harms marine mammals.

Over the next decade, up to 31.9 million marine animals will be injured and deafened by seismic blasting done by oil and gas companies in the Gulf of Mexico. An environmental impact draft put out by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management shows the harmful scope of seismic blasting on whales and dolphins. At the current rate, 80 percent of the Gulf of Mexico’s 763 sperm whales will be injured. These whales could be subjected to an astounding 760,000 airgun blasts. The seismic blasting will also be devastating for the extremely endangered Bryde’s whales. The 33 remaining whales could face up to 588 injuries, with an average of 17 injuries for each of the whales.

Seismic blasting is one of the loudest human-made sounds in the ocean. Each seismic blast can reach up to 250 decibels—louder than a rocket launch. The seismic blasting is loud enough to deafen the marine mammals. And because whales and dolphins rely on sound to hunt, communicate, and navigate the ocean, the seismic blasts are essentially slowly killing them.

Oil and gas companies need to be stopped from doing unchecked and unnecessary seismic blasting that’s extremely harmful to whales and dolphins. Tell the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management that regulations need to be put in place to stop oil and gas companies from injuring and deafening marine mammals.


Dear Mr. Celata,

At the current rate, unchecked seismic blasting in the Gulf of Mexico will lead to 31.9 million marine mammals being injured. This includes endangered Bryde’s whales and sperm whales, who could be facing thousands of injuries. Seismic blasting deafens marine mammals, resulting in them being unable to navigate the ocean, communicate with each other, and hunt for food.

I urge you to put a stop to unnecessary and unchecked seismic blasting. Please consider setting limits on the amount of seismic surveys allowed in the Gulf of Mexico. Also, consider banning seismic blasting in areas populated with sperm whales, bottlenose dolphins, and Bryde’s whales. Adding new regulations could help save hundreds of whales and dolphins from injury.

For the good of the whales and dolphins in the Gulf of Mexico, unchecked seismic blasting needs to be stopped.  Please consider adding new regulations that prevent oil and gas companies from doing unnecessary seismic blasting that harms vulnerable marine mammals.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Amila Tennakoon

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