The world’s oceans are symphonies of sound. Light doesn’t travel very far, so almost everything that lives in the ocean relies on sound to navigate their environment. Cetaceans – whales and dolphins – are especially evolutionarily equipped to experience their world through sound waves, which until the last hundred years or so has served them extremely well.
That is, until human activities like seismic testing for oil and gas deposits, commercial shipping, and military activities (sonar, etc.), introduced a whole lot of noise into the oceans.
I learned all of this on Tuesday while watching Sonic Sea, a documentary detailing the impacts that ocean noise has on whales and dolphins, screened by the South Shore chapter last night.