Consistent with the regulations implementing the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), BOEM announces its intent to prepare an EIS for the review of a construction and operations plan (COP) submitted by Mayflower Wind Energy, LLC (Mayflower Wind) for the construction and operation of a wind energy facility offshore Massachusetts with proposed interconnection locations at Falmouth, Massachusetts, and at Brayton Point in Somerset, Massachusetts. This NOI announces the EIS scoping process for the Mayflower COP. Additionally, this NOI seeks public comment and input under section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA) and its implementing regulations. Detailed information about the proposed wind energy facility, including the COP, can be found on BOEM's website at: www.boem.gov/mayflower-wind.
Siting, Leasing, & Permitting
(Generation, Transmission, & Grid Interconnection)
The Department of the Interior today announced the results of the nation’s highest-grossing competitive offshore energy lease sale in history, including oil and gas lease sales, with the New York Bight offshore wind sale. These results are a major milestone towards achieving the Biden-Harris administration’s goal of reaching 30 gigawatts of offshore wind energy by 2030. Today’s lease sale offered six lease areas totaling over 488,000 acres in the New York Bight for potential wind energy development and drew competitive winning bids from six companies totaling approximately $4.37 billion.
Consistent with the regulations implementing the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) announces its intent to prepare an environmental impact statement (EIS) for the review of a construction and operations plan (COP) submitted by Empire Offshore Wind, LLC (Empire). The COP proposes the construction and operation of two wind energy facilities offshore New York with two export cable routes and up to three export cable landfalls in New York. This notice of intent (NOI) announces the EIS scoping process for the Empire Wind COP.
This Draft Generic Environmental Impact Statement (draft GEIS), prepared pur- suant to the New York State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA), ana- lyzes the potential environmental impacts associated with the State’s procurement of this 2.4 GW of offshore wind energy by 2030, and builds upon and incorporates by reference relevant material from NYSERDA’s Offshore Wind Master Plan.
BOEM has announced the availability of a Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) for the Cape Wind Energy Project. The supplement addresses U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and BOEM’s failure to comply with the Endangered Species Act or the National Environmental Policy Act when a lease was issued. These documents can be found on BOEM's website.
Researchers from the University of North Carolina Institute of Marine Sciences created maps that integrate new stakeholder information with existing agency data, enabling BOEM to reduce potential user conflicts within leases for offshore wind development. Project objectives were to obtain and convey spatially explicit information indicating where wind energy development can avoid or minimize conflicts with fish, fish habitat, fishing, diving, and ecotourism in the three Call Areas published in December 2012: Wilmington-West, Wilmington-East, and Kitty Hawk on the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) offshore of North Carolina.
In 2012, BOEM identified three Wind Energy Call Areas off of North Carolina (US Government, Federal Register Vol 77, No. 240, December 2012): the Kitty Hawk Call Area is located near the North Carolina-Virginia border whereas both the Wilmington-West and Wilmington-East Call Areas are located near the North Carolina-South Carolina border, near Cape Fear and Frying Pan Shoals. In August 2014, BOEM announced three, fully vetted, WEAs offshore of North Carolina, in which each of the three Call Areas were reduced in size. This research project examined the seafloor and benthic communities in the Wilmington-East Call Area with some assessments focused on the smaller Wilmington-East WEA.
BOEM has defined three Wind Energy Areas (WEAs) offshore North Carolina. The Kitty Hawk WEA begins about 24 nautical miles (nm) from shore and extends approximately 25.7 nm in a general southeast direction at its widest point. Its seaward extent ranges from 13.5 nm in the north to .6 nm in the south. It contains approximately 21.5 OCS blocks (122,405 acres). The Wilmington West WEA begins about 10 nm from shore and extends approximately 12.3 nm in an east-west direction at its widest point. It contains just over 9 OCS blocks (approximately 51,595 acres). The Wilmington East WEA begins about 15 nm from Bald Head Island at its closest point and extends approximately 18 nm in the southeast direction at its widest point. It contains approximately 25 OCS blocks (133,590 acres).