APPEA executive director, Barry Jones, said the aim of the document was to inform decision makers about how seismic operations work; explain to decisions makers what the existing regulatory processes are; and inform decision makers about research work the industry is undertaking.
“After all, with the experience of over three decades of seismic surveying, no evidence has been found to suggest that seismic operations have resulted in physical injury or damage to hearing in any marine mammal - a group of animals that includes whales, seals and dugongs,” Jones said.
“The oil and gas industry has carefully studied the use of sound waves as an exploration tool and their effect on marine species,” he said.
“As a result of this research, the industry believes that seismic activities can be managed with minimal impact on the environment. The difficulty is in communicating our knowledge of this extremely complex issue to government decision makers and the community.
“It is factually incorrect for claims to be made that the industry is unregulated. To the contrary, Governments can place up to five different approval requirements on a seismic exploration program.”
Jones said APPEA and its members had been supporters of research in this area for many years.
“New research projects in Australia and overseas will continue to improve our understanding of the subject,” he said.
These projects include studies on blue whales, humpback whales, southern right whales, rock lobsters and southern fur seals.