Seismic Survey Market Is Expected to Grow

Digital Journal recently posted an article entitled “Seismic Survey Market Is Expected to Witness Substantial Growth During Forecast by 2024.” This article states:

“The international seismic survey market is witnessing a strong trend in the field of 4D seismic survey technology. Along with depth, width, and height, the 4D technology also considers the important component of time. As a result, the implementation of this technology has seen a rise in the exploration and production domain of the oil sector. Companies such as Polarcus have adopted restructuring for coming out of debts, for which they received a significant support from their stakeholders. Players in the industry are also recommended to focus on collaborations for staying healthy in the global market.”

Gulf of Mexico Alliance 2017 One Gulf Summit and All Hands Meeting

The international Association of Geological and Geophysical Contractors has announced that This meeting will occur Sunday, March 26, 2017 – Friday, March 31, 2017, at the Omni Hotel in Houston, Texas. IAGC stated that

“Planning is well underway for the 2017 One Gulf Summit and Gulf of Mexico Alliance All Hands Meeting.  The Summit has a robust agenda available on sgmsummit.org. Highlights address challenges that focus on assessing short-term and long-term restoration; effectively linking environmental, human, and economic health; and engaging our international partners relative to the Large Marine Ecosystem that is the Gulf of Mexico.

Debate Over Seismic’s Effect on Fish

The International Association of Geological and Geophysical Contractors recently posted a report on a Bureau of Ocean Energy Management study that indicates seismic may scare away fish under some circumstances. The IAGC posted with this report an IAGC response criticizing and rebutting it. Click here for the IAGC postings.

NOAA Sends Seismic Take ICR to OMB

On February 17, 2017, the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration published Federal Register notice that NOAA has submitted to the U.S. Office of Management and Budget for clearance the following proposal for collection of information under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. Chapter 35):

Agency: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Title: Applications and Reporting Requirements for the Incidental Take of Marine Mammals by Specified Activities (other than Commercial Fishing Operations) under the Marine Mammal Protection Act. OMB Control Number: 0648–0151.

Comments are due to OMB thirty days after the February 17, 2017 Federal Register publication of this notice.

CRE Files Second Comments on NMFS’ Proposed Bryde’s Whale ESA Listing

On February 6, 2017, CRE filed its First Comments with the U.S. National Marine Fisheries Service on the Service’s proposed Bryde’s Whales listing. On February 23, 2017, CRE filed its Second Comments on NMFS’ proposed Bryde’s whale listing .

CRE’s Second Comments address one additional issue: NMFS’ failure to comply with the Office of Management and Budget’s “Agency Good Guidance Practices” Bulletin and with OMB’s implementing guidance for this Bulletin.

This OMB Bulletin is available here.

Industry sees opening to revamp species protection law

The International Association of Geophysical Contractors published the following article:

“Industry sees opening to revamp species protection law

Emily Yehle, E&E News reporter
Published: Friday, February 3, 2017

About 30 baleen whales live year-round in an underwater canyon off the Florida Panhandle, in an area of the Gulf of Mexico that is currently off-limits to oil and gas activity but could be reopened in 2022.

The subspecies of Bryde’s whale may be the most endangered whale in the world, and right now, one U.S. law prohibits companies and agencies from killing or harassing them: the Marine Mammal Protection Act.

NMFS Issues Pile Driving IHA for Kodiak Using New Acoustic Guidance

The U.S. National Marine Fisheries Service has issued an incidental harassment authorization to the City of Kodiak to incidentally harass, by Level B harassment only, marine mammals during construction activities associated with pile driving
and removal and down hole drilling activities in Kodiak, Alaska. NMFS has issued this IHA under the Marine Mammal Protection Act. This Authorization is effective from January 1, 2017 through December 31, 2017.

NMFS used its new Acoustic Guidance in issuing this IHA.

Click here for more information and relevant links.

NMFS Issues Elgin force Base IHA Using New Acoustic Guidance

The U.S. National Marine Fisheries Service issued an Incidental Harassment Authorization to the U.S. Air Force, Eglin Air Force Base to take two species of marine mammals, the Atlantic bottlenose dolphin and Atlantic spotted dolphin, by harassment, incidental to a Maritime Weapon Systems Evaluation Program within the Eglin Gulf Test and Training Range in the Gulf of Mexico from February 4, 2017 through February 3, 2018. NMFS issued this IHA under the Marine Mammal Protection Act. This Authorization is effective from February 4, 2017, through February 3, 2018.

NMFS used its new Acoustic Guidance in issuing this IHA.

NMFS Extends Comment Deadline for Bryde’s Whale Proposed ESA Listing

The U.S. National Marine Fisheries Service has proposed to list the Gulf of Mexico Bryde’s whale as an endangered species under the U.S Endangered Species Act.   NMFS has extended the deadline for commenting on this proposed ESA listing to February 23, 2017.  Click here to read NMFS’ Federal Register notice of this proposed action.

CRE Comments on Proposed Bryde’s Whale ESA Listing

On February 6, 2017, the Center for Regulatory Effectiveness filed comments on the National Marine Fisheries Service’s Notice of 12-Month Finding on a Petition To List the Gulf of Mexico Bryde’s Whale as Endangered Under the Endangered Species Act. CRE’s comments included the following Executive Summary (footnotes omitted):
“The Bryde’s whale is thriving all over the world. There is no evidence that they are declining in the GOM. NMFS has not identified a single Bryde’s whale that has actually been injured by oil and gas seismic, or by any other oil and gas activity in the GOM.