Modify vessels to reduce noise disturbance
Overall effectiveness category No evidence found (no assessment)
Number of studies: 0
Background information and definitions
Underwater noise from vessels can disturb marine and freshwater mammals and may cause behavioural changes and stress (Erbe et al. 2018). Modifications may be made to vessels to reduce noise pollution. This may involve using alternative propellor, rudder or hull designs, or ‘quieting’ technologies, such as electric propulsion. Onboard machinery (e.g. engines, generators, pumps) may also be modified to reduce noise pollution. For example, machinery may be relocated within the vessel, attached to resilient mounts or surrounded by sound dampening materials (International Maritime Organization 2014).
Reducing vessel speeds may also reduce noise pollution. See Set and enforce vessel speed limits.
Erbe C., Dunlop R. & Dolman S. (2018) Effects of noise on marine mammals. Pages 277–309 in: Slabbekoorn H., Dooling R. J., Popper A. N. & Fay R. R. (eds.) Effects of Anthropogenic Noise on Animals. Springer, New York.
International Maritime Organization (2014) Guidelines for the reduction of underwater noise from commercial shipping to address adverse impacts on marine life (IMO MEPC.1/Circ.833). IMO, London.