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Conservation groups call for federal review of offshore wind impact on Gulf of Maine ecosystems  

Credit:  By Fred Bever | Maine Public | May 3, 2022 | www.mainepublic.org ~~

A wide coalition of New England conservation groups is calling on federal regulators for a rigorous review of the potential effects of offshore wind-farms on Gulf of Maine ecosystems and fisheries. And they want that effort made before specific wind sites are proposed – which the feds did not do when planning wind-lease areas in southern New England.

Some 18 groups from Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Maine signed on to the effort, ranging from the New England Aquarium to the Natural Resources Council of Maine, as well as national organizations like the Audubon Society.

They are calling for a “Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement” – a comprehensive up-front review of the all the Gulf’s ecosystems, before any consideration of where the best wind- lease sites might be.

“Yes, we need to act expediently, but that doesn’t mean we should act foolishly or rashly or cause harm,” says lvy Frignoca, the Casco Baykeeper, the chief advocate at the Friends of Casco Bay. She says the groups signing the letter do support the development of offshore wind to fight climate change.

“Let’s really look at the places that should be off the table from the beginning, because they’re going to have too much impact on the environment, important nursery grounds for fisheries or places that maybe heavily fished due to climate change, and let’s try to site these with the least amount of conflict,” she says.

The federal Bureau of Ocean Energy Management is convening a Gulf of Maine wind task force in two weeks.

Source:  By Fred Bever | Maine Public | May 3, 2022 | www.mainepublic.org

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

The copyright of this article resides with the author or publisher indicated. As part of its noncommercial effort to present the environmental, social, scientific, and economic issues of large-scale wind power development to a global audience seeking such information, National Wind Watch endeavors to observe “fair use” as provided for in section 107 of U.S. Copyright Law and similar “fair dealing” provisions of the copyright laws of other nations. Send requests to excerpt, general inquiries, and comments via e-mail.

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