Offshore Wind, Fisheries and Protected Species Science to address the U.S. Climate Crisis

PI: Lipsky, Andrew (NOAA Northeast Fisheries Science Center)
Co-PI(s): Cholewiak, Danielle (NOAA Northeast Fisheries Science Center) : Fratantoni, Paula (NOAA Northeast Fisheries Science Center) : McBride, Richard (NOAA Northeast Fisheries Science Center) : Orphanides, Christopher (NOAA Northeast Fisheries Science Center) : Palki, Deborah (NOAA Northeast Fisheries Science Center) : Van Parijs, Sofie (NOAA Northeast Fisheries Science Center)
Start Year: 2021 | Duration: 3 years
Partners: NOAA, Naval Research Laboratories, Bureau of Ocean Energy Management

Project Abstract:

Offshore wind energy development is rapidly advancing in marine waters of the United States and poised to support $70 billion in capital expenditures by 2030. President Biden plans to double offshore wind production by 2030 to address the impacts of climate change and energy security while promoting ocean co-use and the conservation of marine biodiversity. In the northeastern United States, there are 16 active leases encompassing over 1.7 million acres, with an additional 8 million acres considered for future leasing and new areas also planned for the Gulf of Mexico and Pacific coasts. This rapid expansion requires immediate attention to address the significant interactions between offshore wind and all NOAA trust resources. Scientific research investment to address these needs is critical to achieving U.S. climate policy objectives, while balancing coexistence of offshore wind, fisheries, and protected species. Further, because current NOAA survey designs and sampling methods are largely incompatible with wind energy areas, new and innovative ecosystem observation technologies are needed.