Pacific Region Marine Renewables Environmental Regulatory Workshop
Held concurrently with 11th Annual Ocean Renewable Energy Conference, Portland OR
September 21, 2016
The workshop was held as an integral part of the Ocean Renewable Energy Conference, hosted by the Oregon Wave Energy Trust and the Pacific Ocean Energy Trust, to highlight the publication of two documents that address potential environmental effects from marine renewable energy development, and that are integral to understanding how the region can move forward with permitting marine renewable energy (MRE) development. The two documents: Annex IV 2016 State of the Science Report; and A Review of the Environmental Impacts for Marine Hydrokinetic Projects to Inform Regulatory Permitting: Summary Findings from the 2015 Workshop on Marine Hydrokinetic Technologies, Washington D.C., were presented to the participants. Estimates of the perceived risks (“dashboards”) to the marine environment for six key interactions were presented by the workshop leaders Andrea Copping of Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and Sharon Kramer of H.T. Harvey & Associates:
- Effects of acoustic output from MRE devices on marine animals;
- Effects of EMF on marine animals;
- Effects of changes in flow and energy removal from devices on water bodies;
- Changes in habitats and effects of reefing of marine organisms from MRE development;
- Collision risk of marine animals with tidal turbines; and
- Entanglement of debris on mooring lines as a risk to the environment and fishing.
Ann Bull of the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) presented the results of their latest research on EMF effects and Patrick Cross of the University of Hawaii presented an update on environmental monitoring at the WETS test site in Hawaii.
A panel of regulators (Keith Kirkendall with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Fisheries; Ann Bull with BOEM; and Andy Lanier with Oregon Department of Land Conservation and Development) was asked to share their experiences with permitting MRE devices and test sites, and to react to the dashboards. A panel of MRE applicants (John Ferland of Ocean Renewable Power Company; Justin Klure of Northwest Energy Innovation; and Cherise Gaffney of Stoel-Rives) was asked to share their experiences with permitting MRE devices and test sites, and to react to the dashboards. The workshop participants engaged in open discussion of the dashboards, paths forward to reduce or retire certain risks, to broadly estimate costs for those paths, and they touched on responsibilities for moving forward.
- 2016 Annex IV State of the Science Report: Environment Effects of Marine Energy Development Around the World (Andrea Copping, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory)
- A Review of the Environmental Impacts for Marine and Hydrokinetic Projects to Inform Regulatory Permitting: Summary Findings from the 2015 Workshop on Marine and Hydrokinetic Technologies, Washington, D.C. (Sharon Kramer, H.T. Harvey & Associates)
- Ocean Renewable Energy Conference XI Environmental Regulatory Workshop: EMF Environmental Effects & Risk (Ann Scarborough Bull, Bureau of Ocean Energy Management)
- Navy's Wave Energy Test Site: Environmental Monitoring (Patrick Cross, University of Hawaii)