Seismic Tests Critical

January 16, 2016

Coastal Review Online

The outer continental shelf, or OCS, offshore North Carolina holds the potential for significant amounts of recoverable fossil fuels and wind energy generation. New geological and geophysical surveys using seismic imaging are a critical next step towards harnessing offshore energy resources and realizing the substantial economic benefits such development would bring to North Carolina.
Donald van der Vaart

As chair of the OCS Governors Coalition, Gov. Pat McCrory advocates an all-of-the-above energy policy that encourages the safe and responsible exploration of offshore oil, natural gas and renewable energy. The Obama administration has acknowledged that the lower prices Americans are seeing at the gas pump are the result of increased domestic energy production. Exploration and development of offshore resources, along with appropriate environmental protections and revenue sharing, will maintain affordability and provide North Carolinians with clean, reliable energy.

The lack of current and reliable seismic data is the most pressing obstacle to making informed decisions about how to proceed. Most seismic data for the Atlantic is more than three decades old and cannot provide the vital information mid-Atlantic states need about the location and amount of resources lying below the seabed. With advanced seismic data collection and computer modeling, the industry will be better equipped to protect the environment, safely recover oil and gas resources and site offshore wind energy turbines.

The National Science Foundation safely conducted a 2-D seismic survey off the coast of North Carolina last fall. Interestingly, this study did not receive the attention that the proposed studies have generated, despite the fact that they used the same technology that is proposed for oil and gas seismic data collection. The N.C. divisions of Coastal Management and Marine Fisheries did not receive any reports of disturbances or injury to marine wildlife and are unaware of any adverse impacts resulting from those surveying activities.

Read entire article at Coastal Review Online.

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