Officials of the Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) will host the second meeting of the Fisheries Working Group on offshore renewable energy in New Bedford on April 4, from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m., to discuss the U.S. Department of the Interior's Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement (BOEMRE) request for interest (RFI) for commercial leasing for wind power on the Outer Continental Shelf offshore Massachusetts.
The RFI, issued in December 2010, is the first step in the multi-year federal leasing process for offshore wind energy development in approximately 3,000 square miles of federal waters off the Massachusetts coast. The purpose of the working group is to enable the fishing industry to inform the federal leasing process about commercial fishing interests in the RFI area.
BOEMRE extended the RFI public-comment period until April 18. This additional time will enable the Fisheries Working Group to develop recommendations addressing issues relating to the relationship between commercial fishing and offshore wind power development, according to the EEA.