“Congressman Johnson seeks to end ‘government overregulation’ with reintroduction of Sea Act”

Editor’s note: the International Association of Geophysical contractors published the above-titled article, which was originally published in the Bossier Press-Tribune.  The article reads as follows:

“WASHINGTON – U.S. Representative Mike Johnson (LA-04) reintroduced the Streamlining Environmental Approvals Act (SEA Act) to increase efficiency in the lengthy permit approval processes that have caused setbacks and delays for those working to preserve America’s rapidly deteriorating coastline, interrupted U.S. Naval operations and deterred offshore oil and gas exploration.

The bill reduces excessive government regulations developed over more than 45 years under the federal Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA).

Court Denies Without Prejudice Preliminary Injunction Motions in Atlantic IHA Litigation

Various groups of plaintiffs challenged NOAA/NMFS’ issuance of Marine Mammal Protection Act Incidental Harassment Authorizations for oil and gas exploration in the Atlantic Ocean. The plaintiffs’ challenges were filed in the United States District Court for the District of South Carolina. The plaintiffs filed motions for preliminary injunctions against the Government. On August 26, 2019, the court entered an order denying all the preliminary injunction motions without prejudice to file again. The court dismissed the motions because the plaintiffs’ had not demonstrated imminent harm.  In the court’s own words:

Moods ‘Upbeat’ Heading into GoM Lease Sale -NOIA

Editor’s note: Offshore Engineer posted the above-titled article, which reads as follows:

“Sentiment in the US offshore oil and gas industry is ‘generally upbeat’ heading into the nation’s next Gulf of Mexico lease sale, according to trade association National Ocean Industries Association (NOIA).

On Wednesday in New Orleans, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) will offer 77.8 million acres for a region-wide lease sale, including all available unleased areas in federal waters of the Gulf of Mexico.

“IJMS Editor’s Choice – Seismic surveys do not significantly harm Calanus finmarchicus”

Editor’s note: The International Council for the Exploration of the Sea posted the above titled article, which reads as follows:

“The latest Editor’s Choice article from the ICES Journal of Marine Science is now available. Here, read about how seismic surveys have limited effects on Calanus finmarchicus, a keystone copepod species in the North Atlantic.”

“Seismic surveys use airguns that emit low frequency high magnitude sound to detect subsea resources and to map seabed geology. Such surveys are often conducted in areas that support high-value fisheries and sometimes within or near the spawning grounds of commercially or ecologically important species, creating spatial and resource use conflicts between stakeholders. Although underreported, the extent of seismic surveys is significant. For example, the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate estimates that the extent of seismic surveys in the Norwegian Exclusive Economic Zone is about 133 000 vessel kilometres per year.

Comment on NMFS’ Proposed Modification of LOA for Oil and Gas Seismic in Cook Inlet

Editor’s note:  The U.S. National Marine Fisheries Service published a Federal Register notice that reads in part as follows:

“The U.S. National Marine Fisheries Service is requesting comments on its proposal to modify a Letter of Authorization issued to Hilcorp Alaska LLC (Hilcorp) to take marine mammals incidental to oil and gas activities in Cook Inlet, Alaska.

NMFS must receive an comments and information by no later than September 16, 2019.

NMFS issued regulations governing the take of eleven species of marine mammals, by Level A and Level B harassment, incidental to Hilcorp’s oil and gas activities on July 31, 2019; 84 FR 37442). These regulations include mitigation, monitoring, and reporting requirements for the incidental take of marine mammals during the specified activities.

Nominations to the Marine Mammal Scientific Review Groups

As required by of the Marine Mammal Protection Act, the U.S.

Secretary of Commerce established three independent regional scientific review groups to provide advice on a range of marine mammal science and management issues. The U.S. National Marine fisheries Service conducted a membership review of the Alaska, Atlantic, and Pacific SRGs, and is soliciting nominations for new members to fill vacancies and gaps in expertise.

SRGs members are highly qualified individuals with expertise in marine mammal

“AOP 2019”

Editor’s note:  The International Association of Geophysical Contractors posted the above-titled notice on an IAGC website. The notice reads as follows:

“Wednesday, October 09, 2019 8:00 AM – Friday, October 11, 2019 6:00 PM

Cape Town, South Africa

Africa Oil & Power (AOP) is Africa’s Energy Conference. Now the official conference of the Department of Energy (DoE) of South Africa, AOP will be held this year at the CTICC 1 in Cape Town on October 9-11, 2019. Join Africa’s oil, gas and power leaders for the year’s premier energy event.




Comment on Navy MMPA Authorizations for Northwest Training and Testing Study Area

The U.S. National Marine Fisheries Service published notice that NMFS has NMFS received a request from the U.S. Navy for authorization to take marine mammals

incidental to training and testing activities conducted in the Northwest Training and Testing Study Area for a period of seven years, from November, 2020 through November, 2027.  The NWTT Study Area is composed of established maritime operating and warning areas in the eastern North Pacific Ocean region, including areas of the Strait of Juan de Fuca, Puget Sound, and Western Behm Canal in southeastern Alaska.

NOAA/NMFS’ Proposed GOM Take Rules Do Not Comply with OMB’s Memorandum Implementing the IQA

The Center for Regulatory Effectiveness prepared and sent to NOAA/NMFS a Supplement to CRE’s previously filed Information Quality Act (“IQA”) Alert on NOAA/NMFS’ proposed Gulf of Mexico Take Rules for oil and gas exploration.  CRE’s Supplement is entitled


CRE’s Alert Supplement included the following summary (footnotes omitted):

NMFS Issues Regulations Authorizing Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to  Oil and Gas Activities in Cook Inlet, Alaska

The U.S. National Marine Fisheries Service, upon request from Hilcorp Alaska LLC has issued hereby regulations governing the unintentional taking of marine mammals incidental to oil and gas activities in Cook Inlet, Alaska, over the course of five years (2019-2024). These regulations, which allow for the issuance of Letters of Authorization for the incidental take of marine mammals during the described activities and specified timeframes, prescribe the permissible methods of taking and other means of effecting the least practicable adverse impact on marine mammal species or stocks and their habitat, as well as requirements pertaining to the monitoring and reporting of such taking.