Assessing Environmental Impacts Of The Block Island Wind Farm | Connecticut Public Radio

Assessing Environmental Impacts Of The Block Island Wind Farm

Nov 28, 2016
Originally published on November 24, 2016 9:49 am

Fishermen and scientists are trying to understand how the Block Island Wind Farm may affect fish in Rhode Island waters. This week Rhode Island Public Radio’s Ambar Espinoza reported on what we know and don't know yet about the impact of the offshore wind farm on fisheries. She joined Rhode Island Public Radio News Director Elisabeth Harrison for an update on acoustics, marine mammals and wildlife habitats.

Several state and federal agencies and private firms are monitoring what impacts the Block Island Wind Farm may have on wildlife and marine habitats. Here’s a short rundown of who some of these players are:

Officials with the Coastal Resources Management Council in partnership with the University of Rhode Island, the Rhode Island Sea Grant and the URI Graduate School of Oceanography's Coastal Resources Center set out to characterize the area where the Block Island Wind Farm was sited southwest of Block Island and in federal waters where larger projects are planned for the future.

That research went into the Rhode Island’s Ocean Special Area Management Plan. Many scientists set out to learn what marine life and habitats we have in these areas and which industries use these waters and resources.

URI professors worked with the U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management and other partners to measure the construction noise and vibrations.

Deepwater Wind contracted Rhode Island-based INSPIRE Environmental to conduct a range of environmental assessments that helped secure permits to build the Block Island Wind and the underwater cable.

Much of this work continues as the Block Island Wind Farm moves into its next phase of producing electricity. 

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