Peer Reviewed Publication
Journal of the Acoustical Society of America
Underwater noise and its effects on the environment now sit squarely on the international stage and are being addressed by high-level international bodies, such as the European Union and United Nations. This is in addition to the many governments of coastal nations also working to address concerns under their own national laws and requirements. At the same time, the issue’s intractability in reaching solutions continues to grow. Initial concerns in the 1990s over impacts of certain naval sonars on marine mammals have now expanded to a broader range of species, geographies, sound sources, stakeholder groups, and political and regulatory interests. In addition, there are now concerns over impacts to fishery catch rates and, for some, how reduced catch rates may affect available food for people. This paper examines how the international community can work to find solutions to this seemingly intractable problem. It reviews ten major international agreements and identifies “what” major topical areas are ripe for collaboration and then ties these findings to “how” collaborative processes should be designed to reach effective and lasting solutions.
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