It's tragedies like the Chi-Chi earthquake that send research vessels into the world's waters a few times per year to try to improve our understanding of how, when and why earthquakes hit. But the technology they use to do that — long submersible cannons called airguns — has drawn loud criticism since the 1990s from marine mammal experts.
This is a nice balanced article. The extremist whale-huggers would let everybody die, as long as the whales were safe. A very fascinating battle.