We are pleased to announce that the following Open Access paper has been published which may be of interest to aquatic bioacousticians:
Farcas, A., Thompson, P.M., Merchant, N.D. (2016). Underwater noise modelling for environmental impact assessment. Environmental Impact Assessment Review 57, 114–122.
Open Access link:
Assessment of underwater noise is increasingly required by regulators of development projects in marine and freshwater habitats, and noise pollution can be a constraining factor in the consenting process. Noise levels arising from the proposed
activity are modelled and the potential impact on species of interest within the affected area is then evaluated. Although there is considerable uncertainty in the relationship between noise levels and impacts on aquatic species, the science underlying noise
modelling is well understood. Nevertheless, many environmental impact assessments (EIAs) do not reflect best practice, and stakeholders and decision makers in the EIA process are often unfamiliar with the concepts and terminology that are integral to interpreting
noise exposure predictions. In this paper, we review the process of underwater noise modelling and explore the factors affecting predictions of noise exposure. Finally, we illustrate the consequences of errors and uncertainties in noise modelling, and discuss
future research needs to reduce uncertainty in noise assessments.
Dr Nathan Merchant
Lead Scientist, Noise & Bioacoustics Team
Pakefield Road, Lowestoft, Suffolk, NR33 0HT, UK
Tel: +44(0) 1502 527780 | Mob: +44 (0) 7789 651086
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