Ocean Noise Pollution
For millions of years, the oceans have been filled with sounds from natural sources such as the squeaks, moans and clicks of whales and dolphins, the snapping of shrimp, the sound caused by wind upon the surface and even the occasional rumble from earthquakes. Over millions of years, the ocean's marine species have developed into what they are today, with their own specialized acute hearing abilities, communication skills and echo location abilities at natural sound levels. Hearing is generally as important to many marine creatures as sight is for humans. The oceans once referred to as the "The Silent World" by Jacques Cousteau, has now become an increasingly noisy place since the industrial age. According to Wikipedia, Noise Pollution is excessive, displeasing human, animal or machine-created environmental noise that disrupts the activity or balance of human or animal life. Noise pollution could also be defined as a type of energy pollution in which distracting, irritating, or damaging sounds are freely audible. As with other forms of energy pollution (such as heat and light pollution), noise pollution contaminants are not physical particles, but rather waves that interfere with naturally-occurring waves of a similar type in the same environment. Thus, the definition of noise pollution is open to debate, and there is no clear border as to which sounds may constitute noise pollution. In the narrowest sense, sounds are considered noise pollution if they adversely affect wildlife, human activity, or are capable of damaging physical structures on a regular, repeating basis. Hearing is the universal alerting sense in all vertebrates. Sound is extremely important because animals are able to hear events all around them, no matter where their attention is focused. Sound travels far greater distances than light under water. Light travels only a few hundred meters in the ocean before it is absorbed or scattered. Even where light is available, it...
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