American Wind Energy Association Statement on Draft Massachusetts and Rhode Island Port Access Routes Study

19 Mar 2020

The American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) issued the following statement on the U.S. Coast Guard's (USCG) Draft Areas Offshore of Massachusetts and Rhode Island Port Access Route Study (MARIPARS). The public comment period on the draft report ended on Tuesday, March 16th.

"As the draft study makes clear, the expanding offshore wind industry in the U.S. is entirely compatible with safe vessel navigation," said Tom Vinson, Vice President of Policy and Regulatory Affairs at AWEA. "Offshore wind is set to deliver clean, reliable power and significant economic benefits to the U.S. The draft MARIPARS demonstrates there is no trade-off required: offshore wind growth and safe vessel navigation go together."

In the draft report, the USCG found that no additional vessel routing measures are needed with a standard and uniform grid pattern with at least three lines of orientation and standard spacing of turbines through the lease areas off the coast of MA and RI. Last fall, the offshore wind developers of these lease areas proposed a uniform grid layout generally consistent with what the USCG found protective of vessel navigation in the draft MARIPARS. AWEA strongly urges the USCG to finalize the MARIPARS consistent with the draft report as soon as possible. The recent AWEA U.S. Offshore Wind Power Economic Impact Assessment finds that offshore wind is set to deliver up to 30,000 MW of capacity, 83,000 jobs, and $25 billion of annual economic output by 2030.