Tag Archives: offshore wind

Maryland congressman seeks reassurance on impact of offshore wind

An amendment to legislation has been passed that requests the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to study the effects of offshore wind projects on wildlife offshore Maryland.
The House Committee on Appropriations marked up the FY19 Commerce, Justice and Science Appropriations bill earlier in May. Congressman Andy Harris authored, and the committee passed, an amendment ordering the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) “to study the effects of offshore wind projects on marine mammals and fish, as well as the need for any mitigation measures.” >click to read<09:30

Two big wind farms to rise off coast of Martha’s Vineyard

State officials and utility executives Wednesday picked the first company to build a wind farm off the coast of Massachusetts, a project with as many as 100 turbines 15 miles south of Martha’s Vineyard. Vineyard Wind, a joint venture of New England utility Avangrid and Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners, beat out a proposal from Bay State Wind, a joint venture owned by Eversource Energy and Danish energy giant Orsted. Meanwhile, the Deepwater project will be known as Revolution Wind and is about 12 miles south of the Vineyard. It would be 10 times the size of Deepwater’s five-turbine project off Block Island, >click to read< 16:50

Offshore Wind: Deepwater In Too Deep?

It looked so good at first blush. It checked all the hot boxes — Green. Alternate Energy. Zero carbon footprint. We would end our dependence on fossil fuel, the developers promised. But when folks in East Hampton started taking a closer look at a proposed Deepwater Wind project off the coast of Montauk, the negatives began outweighing the positives for a lot of people who felt they would be adversely affected, especially those in the fishing community. The erosion of support occurred gradually. During the election, the victorious Democratic candidates favored the development of the wind farm though the Republican challengers didn’t. But recreational and commercial fishermen, some armed with data from wind farms in Europe, reported that the wind turbines are detrimental to fish and fatal to migratory birds. >click to read<09:20

Offshore wind rush is irresponsible, Turbine farms threaten the future of fishing

In an April opinion piece, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke wrote that “affordable, reliable, and abundant American energy drives domestic jobs and prosperity.” If by “drives domestic jobs and prosperity” Zinke meant “threatens the very existence of New England fishermen,” then the East Farm Commercial Fisheries Center of Rhode Island (which represents Rhode Island commercial fishermen) would agree.,,, The rush to approve and build these massive projects is irresponsible. The survival of the fishing industry is now dependent on a review process that has been kicked into high gear and is lacking the research and data necessary to make informed and balanced decisions. For example, in its haste to approve these massive projects, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management significantly underestimated the intensity of the fishing effort taking place in the Vineyard Wind project area and seriously undervalued the fisheries, especially the squid fishery. As a result, Vineyard Wind plans to construct its project in a prime squid fishing area. >click to read<08:01

Andrew Cuomo’s wind farm won’t fly without fracking

New York’s Gov. Andrew Cuomo led the cheer squad last month when the Interior Department announced it would begin allowing offshore wind turbines to be built in the shallow waters between New Jersey and Long Island. Mr. Cuomo had recently announced a $6 billion plan to build 2,400 megawatts of offshore wind capacity by 2030, with the costs passed on to bill payers. But though Mr. Cuomo portrays himself as a champion of cutting greenhouse-gas emissions, his simultaneous opposition to a New York City-area nuclear plant exposes his wind plan as a mere play for progressive prestige. Mr. Cuomo isn’t the only Northeastern governor with windy ambitions. Massachusetts’ Charlie Baker signed a bill in 2016 committing his state to develop 1,600 megawatts of offshore wind power by 2027, and New Jersey’s Phil Murphy decreed in January that the Garden State would aim for 3,500 megawatts of offshore wind power by 2030. >click to read<

Washington must come to grips with offshore wind conflicts

Offshore wind energy developers have momentum building for them in East Coast waters. But other maritime industries want to ease up on the throttle. The federal Bureau of Ocean Energy Management recently held another round of public meetings in New Jersey and New York, gathering information for what could be a future round of lease offerings in the New York Bight. Secretary of Interior Ryan Zinke has promised to help fast track future permitting. .,,, Commercial fishermen have a case in federal court over the Statoil lease, and litigation seems certain to reignite.  “We have the Magnuson Act (federal fisheries law) because we want to have American fishing grounds for American fishermen,” said Meghan Lapp, fisheries liaison for fishing company Seafreeze Ltd., North Kingstown, R.I. “BOEM is plowing ahead regardless. They have not slowed down.” >click to read<22:42

N.J. Governor asks feds for six-month extension to assess impact of offshore wind farms on state’s main fishing grounds

Gov. Phil Murphy is asking the federal government to extend the public comment period on proposed new lease sales for offshore wind in the New York Bight, a step that could delay the process for up to six months. In a letter to Ryan Zinke, Secretary of the Interior, the governor requested more time (180 days) because the areas in New York under consideration for wind-energy development include New Jersey’s main fishing grounds, including two that are closest to its coast. >click to read<08:44

Plans For Offshore Wind Energy Draw Criticism At Hearing In Southampton On Monday

“We know the moment [the federal government] gets a taste of wind farms in the Atlantic, we are going to be playing whack-a-mole with energy and oil companies creeping up on our fishing grounds,” Bonnie Brady said at a presentation by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, or NYSERDA, on Monday night at the Southampton Inn. Ms. Brady, executive director of the Long Island Commercial Fishing Association in Montauk, said that, like other commercial fishermen in the audience, she worries that the federal Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, or BOEM, which has jurisdiction over the Atlantic, will lease more ocean for wind energy development and wind up hurting the industry.>click to read<16:01

Deepwater Dilemma: Parts One and Two

Part one is opinions from knowledgeable minds, both environmental planners and long time conservationists, businessmen and board members, but most of all concerned citizens. Part two looks at the concerns and opinions from the commercial fishing community both in Port Judith, Rhode Island and right here at home in Montauk, New York. The fishing and fishing community has already been disrupted by Deepwater Wind in Rhode Island from their Block Island Wind program. Two of those affected, were kind enough to talk to me about their experience and the loss of their trade, their work and their way of life. >click for Part 1< >click for Part 2<11:19

Long Island: Wind farm meetings scheduled – Politicians and fishermen have doubts about visibility and impediments to fishing

New York State on Monday will hold a public meeting in Southampton to discuss its blueprint for wind energy and the recently released federal government call for wind-energy projects along the shore of practically all of Long Island, including the East End.,, The South Fork is also home to the single greatest force in opposition to offshore wind: hundreds of fishermen who see the turbine structures and undersea cables as impediments to fishing. The Long Island Commercial Fishing Association has already joined a lawsuit contesting the federal government’s auction>click to read< 09:41

New Bedford Port Authority, Mass Division of Marine Fisheries, NOAA weigh in through public comments regarding offshore wind

The New Bedford Port Authority, the Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries and NOAA all filed written public comments regarding Vineyard Wind’s Environment Impact Statement. The deadline to file public comments was April 30. All three agencies cited concerns regarding offshore wind’s presence within an important region for commercial fishing as well as marine life that could be affected beyond the acute area. >click to read<10:43

NEFMC Discusses Offshore Wind, Clam Dredge FW, Skates, Groundfish, Herring, IFM, and More at Mid-April Meeting

The New England Fishery Management Council met April 17-19 in Mystic, CT and discussed a wide range of issues that touched on everything from industry-funded monitoring to offshore wind, Clam Dredge Framework, Skate Wing Fishery, Northeast Multispecies -Groundfish, Atlantic Herring –River Herring/Shad, The New England Council paid tribute to two retiring Council members –Mark Alexander of Connecticut, left, who served on the Council for 10 years, and Mark Gibson of Rhode Island, >click to read<15:16

Plans to line the shore of Rhode Island with wind turbines threaten fishermen livelihoods

When Greg Mataronas steams out of Narragansett Bay as early as 3 a.m., he is headed for grounds he knew as an eight-year-old.,,  there is a new force threatening Mataronas’ ability to provide for his wife and children: offshore wind energy.,,, “All of our concerns fall on deaf ears,” Lapp said. “I personally have been meeting with BOEM for three years.” Lapp added that she gave “confidential business information” from over 20 fishing vessels to BOEM to demonstrate that there was heavy fishing activity on one particular lease site, but she said BOEM issued the lease regardless. >click to read<10:29

THREATENED – Scallop fishing off the coast of Long Island

Scallop fisherman Chris Scola pilots his 39-foot dredging boat out of the port at Montauk, steaming 10 miles out to sea. The bearded 44-year-old captain says if Gov. Andrew Cuomo achieves his dream of creating 2.4 gigawatts of offshore wind energy, fishermen will have to steer clear of any giant turbines placed on top of their rich scallop beds. Scallopers see offshore wind development as a threat to their livelihoods and are suing the federal government to protect their fishery, potentially throwing a wrench in Cuomo’s master plan. 14 photos >click to read<16:56

Green Insanity: Offshore Wind Project Cost Mind-Boggling $10K Per KW

Off of the shore of Block Island on the Rhode Island coast, five wind turbines are operating and supplying power to the island. It took years of state and federal policymaking, environmental impact assessments, and town hall meetings for the 30-megawatt wind farm to come to fruition due to its cost and degradation of vistas. It cost $300 million—$10,000 per kilowatt—about 10 times more than the cost of a new natural gas combined cycle unit. Further, it is 55 percent more costly than what the Energy Information Administration (EIA) expects a first-of-a-kind offshore wind unit to cost—$6,454 per kilowatt. >click to read<09:22

Opinion: Ryan K. Zinke – American energy dominance means Mass. wind

from the op-ed – As we look to the future, wind energy — particularly offshore wind — will play a greater role in sustaining American energy dominance. Offshore wind uniquely leverages the natural resources off of our East Coast, bringing jobs and meeting the region’s demand for renewable energy. Ramping up wind development and building new power grid systems also coincides well with Trump’s goal of enhancing and modernizing our American infrastructure. While we continue our commitment to the coal miners and other energy workers who built our nation, we also support wind as a valued component of a diverse and flexible energy policy. >click to read<07:22

How fishermen could thwart Cuomo’s offshore wind master plan

In the mist off New England’s coast, towering alien monoliths pierce the surging waters, soaring 600 to 850 feet above the Atlantic Ocean. Hundreds of these titans, rising up to 200 feet taller than Trump Tower, chop the air with massive blades that are taller than Albany’s Capitol building. Offshore wind turbines like these, Gov. Andrew Cuomo says, are a critical part of his clean energy mandate to generate 50 percent of the state’s electricity from renewable energy. But those humble fishermen are threatening to derail the governor’s goals with a federal lawsuit they believe is their last best shot to save their livelihoods. >click to read<21:41

Offshore Wind States Beware

Off of the shore of Block Island on the Rhode Island coast, five wind turbines are operating and supplying power to the island. It took years of state and federal policymaking, environmental impact assessments, and town hall meetings for the 30-megawatt wind farm to come to fruition due to its cost and degradation of vistas. It cost $300 million—$10,000 per kilowatt—about 10 times more than the cost of a new natural gas combined cycle unit. Further, it is 55 percent more costly than what the Energy Information Administration (EIA) expects a first-of-a-kind offshore wind unit to cost—$6,454 per kilowatt. In terms of generation costs, EIA expects a new offshore wind farm to be 3 times more expensive than an onshore wind farm. And now, fishermen >click to read<08:16

Barry Richard: Warren and Markey are AWOL from Fishing Issues

A restless waterfront is demanding the attention of elected officials on the state and federal levels, but so far there has been little but lip service. This week, Governor Charlie Baker promised to listen to the concerns of the local fishing industry, as plans proceed for an offshore wind farm that could have grave consequences for the industry if not done right. Industry reps are concerned about the impact such development could have on fish stocks. They also worry that the budding wind industry could crowd them out along the waterfront and pose safety risks,, 10 minute radio call in.>click to read<20:24

Proposed wind farms off of New London worry local fishermen

Last week, Ørsted and Eversource announced a joint venture and has submitted a bid to build Connecticut’s first offshore wind farm, in response to the state’s request for proposals for offshore wind energy generation. The approximately 200-megawatt project – Constitution Wind – would be the first of its kind to serve the state of Connecticut and would be located in federal waters 65 miles off shore. “That’s the traditional fishing ground where they’re talking about now,” said Stonington Fisherman Bob Guzzo. >click to read<18:56

Greasing the Skids: Bay State Wind Plans More Than $2 Million in Environmental Research Grants

Bay State Wind, which is working to bring clean, renewable and affordable energy to Massachusetts, today announced plans to provide more than $2 million in grants for research and programs to protect New England’s fisheries and whale populations. The grants include $1 million for a Bay State Wind Marine Science Grant Program for directed fisheries resources research on the Bay State Wind lease area. Funded projects will focus on addressing specific questions and concerns raised by the fishing industry. In addition, the Woods Hole Oceanography Institute would receive a $500,000 multi-year grant for the development of advanced whale detection systems, and the New England Aquarium Right Whale Research Project and the Lobster Foundation of Massachusetts would each receive $250,000 to prevent gear entanglement of the North Atlantic Right Whale. >click to read<11:27

Fishing industry seeks smaller offshore wind rollout, possible delay

As the state sets up an offshore wind industry, those in a much older line of work – fishing – feel a little left out of the conversation. ,,,“Three separate, developer-led outreach efforts have been launched, and all are stumbling to produce meaningful dialogue or move us closer to real solutions in areas ranging from navigation, access, cable routes, radar interference, and gear loss,” the coalition wrote. “Equally troubling, it has become clear that offshore wind developers are unwilling or unable to coordinate their interactions with commercial fishermen to tackle issues that cut across multiple project areas.” >click to read< 08:17

Zinke acknowledges opposition to oil, Feds seek offshore wind off NY/ NJ, 2 areas off Mass available

The federal agency in charge of leasing land for alternative energy in the ocean is looking for companies interested in building wind turbines in shallow waters between Long Island and the New Jersey coast. >click to read< The Department of the Interior has announced that two additional areas located off Massachusetts are now available for commercial wind energy development. >click to read< On the same day his agency announced two additional areas located off Massachusetts are now available for commercial wind energy development, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke  acknowledged there is “a lot of opposition” to President Donald Trump’s plan to open  most of the nation’s coastline to oil and gas drilling. >click to read<20:03

Opponents say Block Island wind farm is causing problems across prime fishing grounds

The five enormous turbines that have been generating electricity off Block Island over the past year are considered a model for the future of offshore wind. But the nation’s first ocean-based wind farm also has exposed what fishermen say are serious threats to them caused by scattering massive metal shafts and snaking underwater cables across prime fishing grounds.,,, Wind power companies have dismissed most of their concerns, and fishermen have become increasingly frustrated, saying that they’re being ignored.>click to read<09:38

New York Releases Offshore Wind Master Plan

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) have released the New York State Offshore Wind Master Plan, an extensive document that highlights the state’s progress on offshore wind development while charting an ambitious path forward. The plan is designed to help meet the Governor’s previously announced goal of procuring 2,400 megawatts (MW) of offshore wind energy by 2030. >click to read<09:44

New Bedford City Officials Draft New Business Plan For Fishing Port

New Bedford city officials have unveiled a draft plan to expand the business opportunities for the city’s lucrative port. The Port of New Bedford is the number one commercial fishing port in the country, hauling in $9.8 billion each year. Ninety percent of that economic value is tied to the fishing industry. However, city officials are looking to diversify the port’s business and they’re betting on offshore wind. >click to read< 09:17

An example of activism, and how to get your point across

A freelance writer Frederick Hewett, from Cambridge Ma wrote a piece about the wonderful wind advantage the Bay State has, Massachusetts Could Win Big In Offshore Wind Energy. The article was posted on the WBUR website, licensed by the Trustees of Boston University. The piece describes what the wind industry repeats continuously, that its just Utopia! Barbara Durkin, a citizen that is opposed to wind energy for all the right reasons commented on the article, and with every comment included information to back up her claims. As fishermen are opposed to offshore wind, offshore drilling, and the emotional issue of the right whale, it is a lesson on how to get your point across with dignity, and knowledge. >click to read< Her tag line on twitter is, “Show me the evidence that wind energy works….still waiting” Follow her on twitter>click here<14:35

Offshore Wind Fiasco: Renewables Industry Faces $Billions In Compensation For Early Repairs

Ørsted must repair up to 2,000 wind turbine blades because the leading edge of the blades have become worn down after just a few years at sea. The company has a total of 646 wind turbines from Siemens Gamesa, which may potentially be affected to some extent, Ørsted confirmed. The wind turbine owner will not disclose the bill, but says that the financial significance is “small”. However, it is far from just the Anholt Park that is affected. The blades at several British Ørsted offshore wind farms must also be repaired after just a few years on the water. >click to read<12:12

What Does the Jones Act Mean for Offshore Wind?

The Block Island Wind Farm, a 30-megawatt wind farm located just off the coast of Rhode Island, began operations in December 2016, fulfilling the goal of the project’s developer, Deepwater Wind LLC, to build America’s first offshore wind farm. The Block Island Wind Farm consists of only five wind turbines and is tiny in comparison to the large offshore wind farms operating off the coasts of Europe, but Deepwater Wind is planning larger wind farms off the coasts of New York, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Maryland and New Jersey. Other developers are doing the same with other projects up and down the East Coast of the United States. >click to read< 14:37

Cuomo’s Curse: Wind Power Obsession Leaves New Yorkers with Rocketing Power Bills

If wind power really is cheap and getting cheaper all the time, why is it that every State or Nation ‘powered’ by the weather is suffering power prices magnitudes higher than those that continue merrily chugging away on coal, gas or nuclear power?.,,, Since 2015, Gov. Cuomo has been hyping his scheme to remake the state’s electric grid so that by 2030 half of the state’s electricity will come from renewable sources.,, To protect their interests, fishermen and fishmongers from New York, New Jersey, Rhode Island and Massachusetts have filed a federal lawsuit,,, >click to read< 09:02