Cory Booker, U.S. senator from New Jersey, is objecting seismic surveys in the Atlantic Ocean.
Sen. Booker last week sent a letter to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Administrator Dr. Kathryn Sullivan urging her to deny four seismic survey applications for oil and gas exploration in the Atlantic Ocean.
Seismic exploration for oil-and-gas is the first step towards potential offshore drilling in the Mid-Atlantic, which represents a significant threat to the environment, the fishing industry, and New Jersey’s coastal economy, reads a statement issued at Sen. Booker’s website.
In the letter, Sen. Booker calls the applications incomplete because they fail to address the cumulative long-range impacts that seismic activity poses to marine life.
“Seismic airgun surveys disrupt foraging and other vital behaviors in endangered whales, dramatically depress catch rates of commercial fish, and can impact a wide range of marine species over extraordinarily large areas of ocean.
In March, a group of seventy-five marine scientists, including some of the nation’s leading experts in marine biology and bioacoustics, concluded that the seismic airgun activity proposed off the Atlantic coast is likely to have significant, long-lasting, and widespread impacts on the reproduction and survival of marine mammals and other species throughout the region.”
Booker continued, “The applications under consideration represent a serious threat to New Jersey’s coastal economy and coastal wildlife. I respectfully ask that NMFS determine these four applications to be incomplete and inadequate, and deny them in their entirety.”