In response to feedback from fishermen and community members, Bay State Wind has revised the turbine layout pattern for its Massachusetts offshore wind project.
The new plan realigns the layout so that the turbines are located in rows running east to west, the preferred orientation for fishing, according to the developer. The updated layout also includes an average of one nautical mile between turbine rows to create distinct fishing corridors while continuing to optimize wind energy production.
According to Bay State Wind, feedback from the local fishing community indicated that the irregular pattern of the previous plan could make fishing in and transiting through the wind farm area difficult, especially in bad weather or during towing or setting gear.
Bay State Wind is a partnership between global offshore wind developer Ørsted and New England electric transmission company Eversource. The partners will submit a construction and operations plan to the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management in early 2019, which will include the updated turbine layout.
“We are committed to being strong partners with New England’s fishing industry and our neighbors in local communities,” says Thomas Brostrøm, president of Ørsted North America. “As we continue to design sustainable energy for the state, we have taken steps to make the layout of wind turbines more fishing-friendly while maintaining energy optimization. We will continue to work with agencies, stakeholders and other developers towards a clean energy future.”
“With local roots that go back more than 100 years, we’re proud to serve New England and understand the importance of the fishing industry to ports in the region,” adds Mike Auseré, vice president of business development at Eversource. “We’re happy to collaborate with a company like Ørsted that shares our commitment to being responsive to the needs of local communities.”