Seismic testing for oil, gas deposits will continue in GOM, coastal waters of Louisiana


The Bureau of Energy Management has decided to allow the continued use of seismic testing to search for oil and gas deposits in the Gulf of Mexico and in coastal waters of Louisiana.

The agency last week issued a record of decision allowing for continued permitting of the testing, which uses blasts from air guns to try to detect the deposits, in the Gulf’s Outer Continental Shelf.

The decision includes the coastal waters of Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida, extending from the coastline outside of estuaries seaward 3 nautical miles from Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama, and seaward to 9 nautical miles from the coastlines of Texas and Florida.

BOEM rejected measures that would have reduced the testing or ended permitting, but did include some designed to reduce impacts to marine life, including monitoring certain species.

Read the BOEM record of decision.