Cease the upcoming seismic survey off the Western Cape coast

A breaching humpback whale. Picture: 123RF

We’re South Africans has begun the method to hunt an interdict to cease Seismic Searcher (Australia) from its 2D/3D seismic survey, deliberate to begin off the Western Cape coast on 15 January.

A Reconnaissance Allow by way of Part 74 of the Mineral and Petroleum Assets Growth Act (No. 28 of 2002) by the Petroleum Company of South on ninth November 2021 was granted with an efficient date of 6 December 2021.

The corporate additionally claims to have included a proper 30-day public evaluate and remark interval, no hint of which might be present in information articles.

The seismic blasting will happen proper subsequent to a number of Marine Protected Areas (MPAs), as depicted on this map.


The venture is in collaboration with the Petroleum Company of South Africa on some imprecise power web site and has been stored out of the general public eye with each the allow being granted and the seismic survey starting when most of South Africa is on vacation or coming back from vacation.

The survey will final 55 days (as much as 180 days) by the vessel BGP Pioneer, supported by Marianne-G. They are going to be towing a supply array and 1 streamer cable, extending as much as 12 kilometres lengthy, astern of (behind) the vessel and roughly 8 metres beneath sea floor.

In 2D seismic surveying each the blast and sound detectors (numbering as much as 100 or extra per charger) are moved alongside a straight line.

In 3D seismic surveying the sound detectors (numbering as much as a thousand or extra) are unfold out over an space and the blast is moved from location to location by means of the realm. Seismic testing includes sending common “blasts” below water in brief sequence to create a map of the floor and sub-surface.

The noise generated can attain 250 decibels because the sound waves generated by the blast penetrate the seabed. As compared, the loudest whale noises vary between 140 and 190 decibels.

This sound is confirmed in a number of peer-reviewed analysis papers to disturb, scare and alter marine life akin to separating whales and their calves.

This impacts:

This could be detrimental to our tourism business. It could additionally have an effect on our fishing business and communities off the West Coast, to not point out our well-known snoek.

A humpback whale calf swimming on the floor. Picture: Getty


To high it all of the ship BGP Pioneer (pictured beneath) has warned mariners that it’s severely restricted in its skill to cease or flip and desires a minimal all spherical clearance of 11km forward and abeam (on a line at proper angles to the ship’s size) and 17km astern (behind the ship) (9NM). How will it cease to guard wildlife?

We’re South Africans is the most important civil society motion in South Africa, reaching 15 million South Africans. They’re demanding that this survey be halted with speedy impact.

Picture: Maritime Herald

Be part of the refrain

Please signal the petition, and assist defend the marine life, setting, fishing and tourism industries of the Western Cape.

The petition can be delivered to the President of the Republic of South Africa; court docket paperwork can be despatched to Seismic Searcher and Minister Gwede Mantashe, and Minister Barbara Creecy can be receiving the petition with additional litigation towards them.

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