Stop Seismic Testing off the NJ Coast and Protect Marine Life!

  • By: Clean Ocean Action
  • Target: Rutgers University President Robert Barchi, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, US President Barack Obama

Seismic Ocean Blasting Proposal is Back

Seismic Study to Return This Summer... Blast the Study, Not the Ocean!

A research study led by Rutgers University and funded by the National Science Foundation is back, and is 26 times worse than originally proposed. This study will blast the ocean with 4 seismic air gun arrays at 246 decibels, every 5-6 seconds, 24 hours a day, for 30 days. If permitted, the Rutgers study can cause “any act of pursuit, torment, or annoyance” to 18,457 marine mammals, including over 12,500 bottlenose dolphins and their infant calves. These explosive sounds would have had a devastating impact on marine life, including whales, dolphins, sea turtles, fish and shellfish. The blasting could also harm NJ’s tourism and fishing industries.

Thousands of citizens signed petition signatures, and hundreds of concerned citizens, including federal state and local elected officials rallied in opposition.  In the summer of 2014, the State of New Jersey’s Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) even went to court to stop it. Between robust opposition and equipment failures on the ship, the permit for the study expired and marine life was spared.  

The fight isn't over.  Loud opposition from the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, federal and state elected officials, fishermen, community members, and concerned citizens has not stopped Rutgers University and the National Science Foundation; they intend to continue their dangerous study, possiblyas early as June 1, 2015. 

We the undersigned oppose all seismic blasting off including the study proposed by Rutgers University and others off the NJ coast in 2015.  We call upon Rutgers University President, Robert Barchi, to stop this study.

For more information on who is conducting the study and the impacts to marine life, visit cleanoceanaction.org.

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A research study led by Rutgers University and funded by the National Science Foundation is proposed for the summer of 2015. It would air gun blast the ocean with 246 decibel sound pulses, every 5 seconds, 24 hours a day, for 30 days. These explosive sounds could have devastating impacts on marine life, including whales, dolphins, sea turtles, fish and shellfish. The blasting would also have harmed NJ’s tourism and fishing industries.


Thousands of citizens signed petitions, and hundreds of concerned citizens including federal state and local elected officials rallied in opposition.  In the summer of 2014, the State of New Jersey’s Department of Environmental Protection even went to court to stop it.  Together, the opposition thwarted the project from moving forward and combined with equipment failures on the ship—the permit for experiment expired. Marine life was spared.


Now the summer of 2014 can be remembered for the record numbers of whales and dolphins splashing, jumping, and turtles that cruised by the shore to the delight of beachgoers. 


But the fight isn't over.  Rutgers and the others plan to return in the summer of 2015 to do the study, so we need to keep up the momentum!


We the undersigned oppose the seismic blasting including the study proposed by Rutgers University and others off the NJ coast in 2015.  We call upon our elected leaders including President Obama and Governor Christie to stop this study. Moreover, we urge Rutgers University President, Robert Barchi, to stop this study.

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