Sonic Sea Humpback And Calf

Sonic Sea

This film is available for viewing from the film website.

Oceans are a sonic symphony. Sound is essential to the survival and prosperity of marine life. Sonic Sea is a 60-minute documentary about the devastating impact of industrial and military ocean noise on whales and other marine life.

The film begins with a mystery: the unexplained stranding and mass mortality of several species of whales in the Bahamas in March 2000. As the mystery unfolds, the film explores the critical role of sound in the sea, and the sudden, dramatic changes human activity is inflicting on the ocean’s delicate acoustic habitat — changes that threaten the ability of whales and other marine animals to prosper, to function, and ultimately, to survive.

Sonic Sea features several charismatic scientists, including Ken Balcomb, the former Navy pilot and acoustics expert who proved to the world that naval sonar is killing whales, as well as the musician and environmental activist, Sting, whose moving interview connects the sonic world of marine life with our sonic world on land. The film offers solutions (and, by extension, hope) for a quieter ocean, and underscores that the ocean’s destiny is inextricably bound with our own.

2016 | 60min | USA More info on the film website.

Watch the trailer

Related resources

Department of Fisheries and Oceans
Mitigating the impacts of ocean noise

As part of the Oceans Protection Plan, the Government of Canada is committed to leading the development of an Ocean Noise Strategy for Canada. The Strategy will define the Government’s vision, and guide future federal efforts to address priority underwater noise issues. This includes establishing a whole-of-government approach and long-term plan to guide federal science research, technology development and the management of human-produced marine noise in Canada’s oceans. The anticipated publication of the Draft Ocean Noise Strategy for Canada is in 2022. Following a public engagement period of the draft Strategy, publication of the  final Ocean Noise Strategy for Canada is anticipated in 2023.

 – DFO’S (MPC) Marine Environmental Quality Team, May 10, 2022
The Sound Aquatic

The Ocean and the Anthropause
A Hakai Magazine podcast.