WASHINGTON, DC / ACCESSWIRE / June 3, 2020 / The Responsible Offshore Development Alliance (RODA) is calling on state and federal regulators to extensively revise their approach to planning offshore wind development off of Oregon, calling the current system “broken and ineffective” for preserving sustainable seafood production. The comments come in a public comment letter submitted by RODA on the engagement plan for the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management’s (BOEM) Oregon Intergovernmental Renewable Energy Task Force.
In the letter, RODA calls for BOEM to develop a new planning and engagement model that brings fisheries stakeholders into the process early, with greater participation from fisheries members on task forces and greater opportunities for public input.
Task forces need to work with the industry identify potential impacts on fishing before any offshore leases are issued. Often input from the fishing industry is sought too late in the process, after leases have been awarded and sites selected.
“Fisheries participants and experts must be wholly integrated into every step of the planning process through true collaboration,” the letter states.
Collaboration with the fishing industry is vital because of the many documented conflicts between fishing and wind energy development. These include potential environmental impacts on marine species and habitats; limiting fishing access; disruptions of scientific surveys; and interactions with protected species such as whales.
RODA is a membership-based coalition of fishing-related companies and associations committed to improving the compatibility of new offshore development with their businesses. RODA’s approximately 170 members represent every Atlantic coastal state from North Carolina to Maine, and Pacific coast members in California, Oregon and Washington.
SOURCE: Responsible Offshore Development Alliance
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