Specialist Committees to Develop Recommended Management Practices
The Environmental Technical Working Group (E-TWG) for the State of New York has recognized a need to develop best management practices (BMPs) to mitigate wildlife impacts from offshore wind development in the eastern United States. Two Specialist Committees, focused on 1) marine mammals and sea turtles and 2) birds and bats were formed to develop recommendations for approaches to better understand and mitigate impacts to these taxa from offshore wind energy development. Committee membership includes resource managers and regulators, scientists, and environmental permitting specialists for offshore wind energy developers.
The Specialist Committees began meeting in April 2019 with the goals of bringing together expert stakeholders to review existing measures to reduce impacts to focal taxa, and developing general recommendations to mitigate (avoid, minimize, reduce, or offset) impacts. The immediate charge for both Specialist Committees was to help inform environmental requirements that could be included in New York's Phase 2 Offshore Wind Procurement. Each committee has developed a document that summarizes best practice recommendations and committee discussions to date; these documents will be updated periodically as committee discussions progress.
Summaries of Committee Discussions and Recommendations
These documents are reflective of the topics that each Committee has discussed to date, but are not comprehensive of all mitigation approaches and possible recommendation topics, nor do these documents reflect a relative prioritization of mitigation approaches. Committees chose initial discussion topics of variable conservation importance and discussion difficulty. Additional topics will be incorporated into future versions of each documents as Committee discussions progress.
Bird and Bat Specialist Committee Recommendations
Version 1.0 - March 2020
Marine Mammal Specialist Committee Recommendations
Version 1.0 - April 2020
Joint Committee Recommendation to Support Regional Monitoring and Research
Version 1.0 - April 2020 (developed collaboratively by both committees)
Recommendations developed by the Specialist Committees were referenced in a letter submitted by the E-TWG as public comment to the New York Public Service Commission and New York Energy Research and Development Authority in April 2020. The letter reflects support for the inclusion of recommendations developed by these Specialist Committees into future New York offshore wind procurements to benefit both wildlife conservation and the offshore wind industry.