The count is now at eight for the number of dead whales that have washed up on the coastlines of New York and New Jersey. The first whale found was on December 5, 2022, and at first, no one thought it was anything to look into until a few more whales washed up in the same area. Local environmental groups noted that the area had not previously seen that many whales wash up in such a short period of time and that it was a concern that needed to be investigated.
The area is being explored for offshore wind farms, and the concern is that the surveying of the ocean floor is harming or causing the whales to become disoriented. Environmentalists from New York and New Jersey have written to President Biden, asking him to investigate the whales' deaths. They are also asking him to halt site work in the area for the wind farms until the whales' cause of death is determined. New Jersey has approved three offshore wind farms, with two of the three farms being built by the Danish company Orsted. New York is also planning wind farm activity off the coast. Leading Light Wind recently submitted a bid for the third round of offshore wind project solicitations in New York, along with two other multiple developers submitting joint proposals, including Orsted Eversource and Equinor BP.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration says humpback whale deaths are not related to offshore wind activity and that they have been monitoring an unusual mortality event for humpback whales since 2016.
The latest whale to wash up is a 35-foot humpback whale, which was found on Lido Beach in New York on January 30, 2023. Of the whales that have washed up since December 2022, one was determined to have died due to a vessel strike, but the cause of the rest of the whales' deaths remains a mystery.
What do you think is causing the whales to die? Do you think it is the surveys for the wind farms and if so should we not allow offshore wind farms to protect the whales?
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