Noise

OSPAR is working with other international organisations (e.g. the Agreement on the Conservation of Small Cetaceans of the Baltic and North Seas, ASCOBANS) to investigate the problems associated with underwater noise and identify future actions to address underwater noise.

Levels and frequencies of anthropogenic and naturally occurring sound sources in the marine environment. Specturum Noise Level ("Acoustic intensity per Hertz") versus Frequency (measured in Hertz or "cycles per second").

Further research is needed on the propagation and effects of underwater sound on marine life, as well as behavioural and auditory studies, programmes to monitor the distribution of sound sources and the relevant marine species, and anthropogenic sound budgets. There is an urgent need to standardise methods for assessing the impacts of sound on marine species and to address the cumulative effects of different sources. OSPAR should facilitate the sharing of information, the coordination of data and measures specific to the Regions, and the standardisation of measurements. OSPAR should increase efforts to develop, review and apply mitigation measures to reduce the impacts of underwater noise and develop guidance on best environmental practices (BEP) and best available techniques (BAT) for mitigating noise emissions and their environmental impacts.