As a meeting of the International Maritime Organisation’s Sub-Committee on Ship Design and Construction (SDC 8) closed today in London, the Clean Arctic Alliance welcomed its recognition that the non-mandatory nature of the current IMO guidelines on underwater noise pollution from ships is a key barrier to their implementation, and called on the IMO to expedite the development of mandatory measures to tackle this serious threat to marine life.

“The non-mandatory nature of the current guidelines, which have not been updated since 2014, has allowed noise levels in the ocean to continue to rise”, said Dr Sian Prior, Lead Advisor to the Clean Arctic Alliance. “This is a problem globally, but a special concern for the Arctic where environmental conditions mean that ship-source underwater noise has a much greater impact on marine life, including whales, dolphins and fish”.

Seas At Risk is a coordinating member of the Clean Arctic Alliance. More information can be found here.