This report supplements the Atlantic Shores Offshore Wind Construction and Operations Plan.
The Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (Magnuson-Stevens Act), passed in 1976 and amended in 1996, requires that an Essential Fish Habitat (EFH) consultation be conducted for any activity that may adversely affect important habitats of federally managed marine and anadromous species. Atlantic Shores Offshore Wind, LLC (Atlantic Shores) is proposing an offshore wind energy generation project within the southern portion of Lease Area OCS-0499 (the Project). The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM), as the lead federal agency for the Project, has the responsibility to initiate an EFH consultation prior to approving the Project. This Preliminary EFH Assessment is prepared as an appendix to Atlantic Shores’ Construction and Operations Plan (COP) at the request of BOEM to provide information needed to begin their consultation with National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Fisheries regarding EFH and EFH species. The submittal of a Preliminary EFH Assessment, prior to completion of additional 2021 benthic surveys and complete habitat mapping, was agreed upon in a virtual meeting between Atlantic Shores and BOEM on October 26, 2020 (BOEM, 2020a).
A revised version of the document can be found here.