Cunningham questions Trump official on Seismic Airgun Blasting

Local News

Offshore drilling and seismic testing. Big controversies facing Charleston and the entire coast.

Thursday at a House Natural Resources Committee hearing examining the threats on the North Atlantic Right Whale, Rep. Joe Cunningham pressed Trump Administration official Chris Oliver on the disruption to marine life caused by seismic airgun blasting. Cunningham begins his questioning at around the 2:30 mark of the video.

Cunningham used an airhorn to demonstrate how loud seismic airgun blasting is, noting that the sound from a seismic airgun blast is 16,000 times louder, repeated every 10 seconds over a period of months.  After the demonstration, Mr. Oliver agreed that it was impactful on marine species.

“I’m a former ocean engineer, but it doesn’t take an expert to know that seismic airgun blasting is an incredibly disruptive process for marine life that depends on sound to communicate and navigate,” said SC 1st District Rep. Joe Cunningham. “Let me be perfectly clear, South Carolinians do not want offshore drilling off our coast, and we do not want its disruptive precursor, seismic airgun blasting.”

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