Lindy Weilgart

Dr Lindy Weilgart has specialized in underwater noise pollution and its effects on cetaceans and other marine life since 1994. Before that, all her degrees and post-doctoral studies focused on free-ranging whale acoustic communication. She is currently an Adjunct Research Associate in the Biology department at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. She also serves as Ocean Policy Consultant for OceanCare and Scientific Advisor for the International Ocean Noise Coalition.

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Loudest industrial ocean noise pollution

The loudest industrial sources of human-made ocean noise are the compressed-air guns used as sound sources in oil-industry seismic surveys. These devices use high-pressure gas to instantaneously blast out a bubble under water, a process that produces an extremely loud noise. These guns are arranged into tuned arrays which allow the sound of many different devices to merge into a single, much louder burst of noise. The volume of these blasts has been calculated to be 260 dB (re 1 μPa) at its point of origin.