Ocean news: Oil drilling, how noise affects sea critters, ocean satellite

President Obama announces plans for domestic offshore oil production:

With gas topping $4 a gallon, President Barack Obama on Saturday announced new plans to speed up domestic drilling for oil. In his weekly address to the nation, the president outlined his plans for what he calls “safe and responsible” oil production. The Obama administration will speed up the leasing process for the Alaska National Petroleum Reserve, give oil companies better financial incentives to use their leases and extend all drilling leases in the Gulf of Mexico so oil companies have more time to implement safety measures after the devastating BP oil spill.

How noise affects sea life:

Alongside a boom in international shipping and deep-sea oil development, the ocean is growing ever-noisier and scientists are increasingly wary of sound’s potential to impact sea life beyond just marine mammals.

NASA to launch ocean-watching satellite!:

The Earth-observing Aquarius/SAC-D mission will measure the salt levels, or salinity, of the ocean surface, and the subsequent interactions between ocean circulation, the water cycle and other drivers of the planet’s climate.

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