Canada invests in new technologies to reduce underwater noise from ships

The Government of Canada is investing in new technologies that will help reduce underwater noise from vessels on Canada’s waters.

Illustration. Image Courtesy: Port of Halifax

On 11 August, the Minister of Transport, Omar Alghabra, announced more than $3.1 million for 22 projects to help reduce the impact of underwater vessel noise.

Underwater noise from boats can negatively impact the marine environment and vulnerable marine mammals— including species like the endangered Southern Resident killer whales.

The projects that won the funding include:

  • Workshops to identify safe and practical approaches to reducing underwater noise;
  • Developing a tool available to all members of the marine industry to predict and implement effective quiet designs into new vessel being built;
  • Developing new, real-time tools to track underwater noise released by marine vessels; and
  • Developing a tool to detect marine mammals and alert nearby vessels.

“Our government is committed to keeping our marine ecosystems safe, and this investment will help do just that. The Quiet Vessel Initiative will advance new technologies to help reduce the impacts of noise caused by humans on marine mammals, like the vulnerable Southern Resident killer whale. Together with industry and academia, we will continue to take concrete steps to protect our endangered marine mammals and keep our waters safe,” Minister Omar Alghabra said.

The Quiet Vessel Initiative was announced on 30 June 2021. Projects funded through the Quiet Vessel Initiative will help generate the technical evidence needed to support Canada’s noise management measures in the Salish Sea and elsewhere in Canada.

They will also provide guidance to industry, academia, and the International Maritime Organization (IMO) to influence future quiet vessel design standards and adoption.

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