In June 2019, Governor Janet Mills created the Maine Offshore Wind Initiative to enable the state of Maine to identify opportunities for offshore wind development in the Gulf of Maine and to determine how Maine can best position itself to benefit from future offshore wind projects.
The Maine Offshore Wind Initiative was charged with promoting compatibility between potential future and existing uses in the Gulf of Maine, specifically addressing any impact on Maine’s commercial fishing and maritime industries when considering offshore wind sites. In addition, the Offshore Wind Initiative was given responsibility for Maine’s participation in the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) Gulf of Maine Task Force, which was created last year to identify opportunities for renewable energy leasing and development on the Outer Continental Shelf in the Gulf of Maine.
Landings, October 2020
While wind power is not a new idea, recent developments are pushing the issue to the fore front of lobstermen’s minds. The MLA continues to engage in all issues that could affect how lobstermen fish. To that end, the MLA joined the Responsible Offshore Development Alliance in order to broaden our knowledge and to have greater expertise available.
Timeline of events
- 11/12/20 – The MLA submitted a letter to Governor Janet Mills expressing concern about the rapid increase of offshore wind power planning and the lack of stakeholder involvement. https://mainelobstermen.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/11/MLA-Mills-Offshore-Wind-Concerns_2020.11.11_final.pdf
- 11/20/20 – The State of Maine released an announcement regarding a new proposed research wind farm in southern Maine. Read the MLA’s response to the state:
December 2020 – the state held a series of webinars intended to include lobstermen & fishermen in the process. You can listen to the webinars
- December 15, 2020 webinar
- December 16, 2020 webinar
- December 17, 2020 webinar
- December 22, 2020 webinar
- Slides from the webinars
- The Governor’s offshore wind plan frustrates fishermen
- Massachusetts Offshore Wind Project Screeches To A Halt
For more information regarding offshore wind in Maine please see see the following links:
Maine will also be conducting a 2 year planning process to advance offshore wind through Maine’s Floating Offshore Wind Roadmap process.
For frequently asked questions about offshore wind, please see this site: https://www.maine.gov/energy/offshorewind/projects/researcharray/FAQs
Sign up to receive updates from the state of Maine regarding Maine’s efforts around offshore wind energy development.
Consider supporting Responsible Offshore Development Alliance (RODA). RODA is a broad membership-based coalition of fishing industry associations and fishing companies committed to improving the compatibility of new offshore development with their businesses. Honestly, I don’t know where we would be when it comes to offshore wind without them. They are small but mighty!