Canada's Ocean Noise Strategy: Legislation and Policy Analysis

Underwater noise, ocean protection
Mike Kofahl, Stephanie Hewson and Maryann Watson

A review of federal Crown law and policy frameworks to identify existing mechanisms to manage underwater noise pollution in Canada

To mitigate and manage underwater noise, the federal government committed in 2020 to develop a draft national Ocean Noise Strategy. This report, commissioned by WWF-Canada and conducted by East Coast Environmental Law and West Coast Environmental Law, is intended to help make sense of the current legal environment surrounding underwater noise management in Canada – and to inform the creation of a strong strategy. 

The legal analysis found that the tools Canada already has to protect underwater soundscapes are underutilized and lack clear targets and important features that would make protection efforts legally binding, measurable and enforceable. This report also recommends a range of pathways for Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Transport Canada, Environment and Climate Change Canada, Parks Canada, and regulators of coastal offshore industries to work collaboratively to prioritize underwater noise.

Click here to view a webinar recording on Ocean Noise Regulation in Canada, featuring West Coast Staff Lawyer Stephanie Hewson and Mike Kofahl, East Coast Environmental Law.

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West Coast Environmental Law, East Coast Environmental Law, WWF-Canada
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