This Wednesday, joint-venture partners Ørsted and Eversource announced they came into an agreement with a fishing consortium to support safe navigation around their Northeast offshore wind farms.
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A collaboration to increase safety standards in offshore wind
Accordingly, Ørsted and Eversource will collaborate with Sea Services North America and its partner fishermen in Rhode Island, Connecticut, and New York. In fact, the offshore wind farms that the agreement includes are the; 704 MW Revolution Wind project serving Rhode Island and Connecticut; the 132 MW South Fork Wind serving Long Island; and the 924 MW Sunrise Wind project serving New York.
“We believe strongly that offshore wind can coexist with all ocean users, including the region’s commercial and recreational fishing fleets,” said David Hardy, Chief Executive Officer of Ørsted Offshore North America. Thus, “our expanded collaboration with Sea Services will help us as we strive to achieve that coexistence; particularly, with the valuable support from fishermen who know the area’s waters best.”
Indeed, Sea Services’ fishermen have experience providing scouting vessels and monitoring services since they assisted Revolution Wind’s project research vessels last year. Accordingly, the company helped locate, identify, and avoid fishermen’s gear during pre-construction marine surveys. Moreover, this partnership helped improve communication and coexistence during the surveys.
“Our partnership with Ørsted and Eversource not only ensures enhanced safety and protection of the ocean environment; but also will support the region’s economy by creating new jobs and providing an economic opportunity for our fishermen;” said Sea Services CEO and co-founder Gordon Videll. So,” when our vessels and crews are not fishing, we will be providing Ørsted and Eversource; with 24/7 monitoring of all designated wind project assets. Also monitoring and education for vessels traveling in designated areas. As wind farms mature grow, so will opportunities for the Sea Services consortium.”
Ørsted and Eversource on the partnership with Sea Services North America
Therefore, Ørsted and Eversource expect this collaboration to create jobs for fishers, increase safety standards, and train participating crews. Additionally, the agreement will provide additional days at sea for the region’s fishing fleet.
“Our partnership with Sea Services North America follows through on our commitment to engage other ocean users, such as commercial fishermen. Particularly, throughout the full life cycle of our projects and utilize local partners to bring commercially successful and mutually beneficial projects to life;“ said Ken Bowes, Vice President of Siting and Permitting at Eversource.
In fact, this agreement marks the first time an offshore wind developer and a commercial fishing consortium; sign a substantial commercial contract in the history of U.S. offshore wind.
Separately, Ørsted announced it also began discussions with Sea Services to expand this scope into its Ocean Wind and Skipjack wind farms.