Monthly Archives: August 2010

Ocean Noise Pollution Can Lead Fish To Their Death

A recent compelling scientific study of the effects of noise pollution in the ocean yields yet another cautionary tale about further proliferation of wind turbine facilities in the world’s oceans. As outlined at Science Daily, the growing amount of human noise pollution in the ocean could lead fish away from good habitat and off to their death, according to new research from a UK-led team working on the Great Barrier Reef.

In earlier research, Dr Steve Simpson, Senior Researcher in the University of Bristol’s School of Biological Sciences discovered that baby reef fish use sounds made by fish, shrimps and sea urchins as a cue to find coral reefs. With human noise pollution from ships, wind farms and oil prospecting on the increase, he is now concerned that this crucial behaviour is coming under threat.

Fishing stocks in the Gulf of Maine have been devastated in the last five decades, and restoration will take time. Despite the apparent allure of distant offshore locations for reducing (with distance) the serious noise pollution large industrial wind turbines produce on land in Maine, credible studies such as this one point out how much we haven’t known about the effects of wind turbines in the nearby ocean.

It seems prudent to tread very carefully indeed in the Gulf of Maine, lest we lose what little we have left of our precious fishing stocks and fishing economy.

Noise Pollution and Compassion

“There is nothing amazing about being rich or highly educated; only when the individual has a warm heart do these attributes become worthwhile.” – The Dalai Lama

I have seen difficult or protracted noise pollution problems resolved, or moved toward resolution, when the noise producer recognized the impact caused by their operations, listened to or acknowledged those afflicted by their noise emissions, and from that awareness, worked to change the situation and prevent future occurrences.

When the noise polluter refuses to fully acknowledge the problems they create and refuses to listen to those they affect, the result is that suffering continues.

Pumps in Portland

Had a good visit today at a residential building in Portland with a noise problem; a team visit with Steve Ambrose, Member INCE (Brd. Cert.). The problem turned out to be clearly audible and persistent noise in the residential first floor from water circulation pumps that lacked vibration isolation located in the basement mechanical room. The impeller blade pass frequency and the pump “ringing” whine was clearly audible upstairs. Really didn’t have to do much in the way of analysis. A quick shot with the iPhone’s SignalScope application highlighted the blade pass frequency for confirmation in the mechanical room in the basement. Met some very nice people in the building, including the maintenance guy- good conversations and discussions about what an isolator looks like, where it would go (hangers mostly, lots of them!) and how to incorporate isolation in phases in the operating and maintenance budget. Now they have a preliminary plan and an idea of budget. Everybody walked away happy.