U.S. Navy Sonar and Marine Mammals: A Recommendation of Additional Marine Mammal Mitigation Measures in the Northwest Testing and Training (NWTT) Study Area
Corcoran, Meegan Brianna
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National security and environmental health have been at odds in America for decades. An example is the competing interests regarding Navy active sonar and marine mammal impacts. Navy sonar is essential for submarine detection, identification, and tracking. However, active sonar has been correlated to behavioral changes, deafness, hemorrhaging, stranding and death of marine mammals throughout the oceans. The U.S. Navy is currently proposing to increase active sonar testing and training off the Pacific Northwest coast in a range complex known as the Northwest Testing and Training (NWTT) Study Area. The Navy presently employs several marine mammal mitigation measure in order to limit negative impacts. However, additional mitigation measures exist that the Navy may utilize to further decrease harm. I have developed and evaluated five additional measures which support national security and environmental health. It is imperative the Navy assesses alternative mitigation measures that increase environmental protection while maintaining readiness standards.
- Marine affairs