NMFS is developing acoustic guidelines for assessing the effects of anthropogenic sound on marine mammal species. NMFS intends to use these acoustic guidelines to:
- Summarize past policies and update basic science-based guidance; and
- Increase transparency and consistency of how acoustic effects on marine mammals are assessed in the context of NMFS’ authorizations, permits, consultations, and exemptions under various environmental statutes (e.g., MMPA, ESA, and National Marine Sanctuaries Act).
Draft Acoustic Guidelines are currently undergoing an internal peer review. NMFS’ peer review site, the peer review panel, and the charge questions to the panel are available here .
After peer review, NMFS will seek public comment. Once the peer review and public comments are addressed, NMFS intends to finalize and release the acoustic guidelines.