IAGC recognizes IOGP sound & marine life achievements

In 2005, IOGP initiated a joint interest project (JIP) on sound in the marine environment. This came about because several of the Association’s member companies identified some serious gaps in the industry’s understanding of what impact offshore operations in general – and seismic surveying in particular – might be having on sea life.

A year later, the International Association of Geophysical Contractors (IAGC) joined IOGP – which is when the JIP really took off.

On February 20, IAGC, at its Annual Conference in Houston, took the opportunity to recognize that long-standing collaboration by presenting its President’s Award for Excellence to IOGP. Gordon Ballard, the Association’s Executive Director was on hand to accept the honour from IAGC VP Regulatory & Governmental Affairs Dustin Van Liew (standing in for IAGC President Nikki Martin, who was indisposed).

Gordon took the opportunity to summarize the findings of JIP, and its $55 million in research and 70 publications in peer-reviewed literature: “After more than half a century of worldwide seismic surveys, there is no evidence that sound from properly mitigated seismic surveys has any significant impact on any marine populations.”

He went on to describe the specific JIP insights and recommendations involving aspects of marine sound, seismic techniques and mitigation measures. ‘

But this is a thank you speech – not a seminar’ he reminded the audience as he acknowledged that the IAGC award ‘is recognition of the close work that both associations have done together.” Moreover, he added, “the IAGC award doesn’t mark the end of that collaboration – it’s more of a milestone on the road our two Associations will be travelling in tandem. A road that leads to better, safer, more sustainable geophysical operations. Today and for decades to come.”

Putting those words into action, that afternoon Gordon participated in a panel discussion on ‘The industry’s identify crisis: our role in public education & influence.’

For more details about JIP findings, visit

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