The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) published in the Federal Register on April 11, 2018, a Proposed Sale Notice (PSN) for Commercial Leasing for Wind Power on the Outer Continental Shelf Offshore Massachusetts.
The PSN requests public comments on BOEM’s proposal to auction two lease areas offshore Massachusetts for potential commercial wind energy development. Located south of Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket, Lease OCS-A 0502 consists of 248,015 acres, and Lease OCS-A 0503 consists of 140,554 acres.
To help inform the public comment process, interactive maps on the Northeast Ocean Data Portal have been updated to show the two PSN areas. The Energy and Infrastructure theme map shows the PSN areas along with other energy planning areas and existing energy facilities. The Data Explorer enables users to view the PSN areas in the context of other ocean uses, such as commercial fishing vessel activity or commercial vessel traffic, and ecosystem characteristics, such as abundance of baleen whales. For birds, the Data Explorer provides maps focusing specifically on those species with higher vulnerability to offshore wind energy projects (as determined by BOEM), including higher collision sensitivity (total abundance or species richness) or higher displacement sensitivity (total abundance or species richness).
For information on how to submit comments to BOEM, visit https://www.boem.gov/Massachusetts/. Comments received electronically or postmarked by the end of the sixty-day public comment period will be made available to the public and considered by BOEM before the publication of the Final Sale Notice, which will announce the time and date of the lease sale.
The PSN document provides detailed information concerning the area available for leasing, the proposed lease provisions and conditions, auction details, and lease execution. In addition to public comment, the PSN requests information from companies potentially interested in bidding on the leases.
Links to the interactive maps:
- Energy and Infrastructure Theme Map
- BOEM Massachusetts Proposed Sale Notice Areas (PSN Areas) + Commercial Fishing Vessel Activity (Multispecies, 2015-2016, <4 knots)
- PSN Areas + Commercial Vessel Traffic (2013 All Vessel Density)
- PSN Areas + Baleen Whales (Abundance)
- PSN Areas + Birds with Higher Collision Sensitivity (Total Abundance)
- PSN Areas + Birds with Higher Collision Sensitivity (Species Richness)
- PSN Areas + Birds with Higher Displacement Sensitivity (Total Abundance)
- PSN Areas + Birds with Higher Displacement Sensitivity (Species Richness)