Environmental and Human Dimensions of Ocean Renewable Energy Development

Journal Article

Title: Environmental and Human Dimensions of Ocean Renewable Energy Development
Publication Date:
February 14, 2013
Journal: Proceedings of the IEEE
Volume: 101
Issue: 4
Pages: 991-998
Publisher: IEEE
Technology Type:

Document Access

Website: External Link


Henkel, S.; Conway, F.; Boehlert, G. (2013). Environmental and Human Dimensions of Ocean Renewable Energy Development. Proceedings of the IEEE, 101(4), 991-998.

A number of review articles have synthesized current expert opinion regarding interactions of ocean energy generation technologies with environmental parameters and their potential effects and impacts. Fewer articles have documented such interactions, as operational devices and or demonstration sites at which to make such observations are limited. In this paper, we discuss how the perceived risk or impact of ocean renewable energy development on coastal communities (both the human and marine biological communities) is a function not only of actual physical interactions but also depends on the regulatory environment and how potentially impacted coastal resources are valued by stakeholders. In this paper, we review potential environmental effects of ocean energy, identify applicable federal regulations that address potentially affected ecological components, and highlight observations about stakeholder concerns from experiences in Oregon. Understanding the societal lens through which potential environmental effects are viewed is important for developers to move forward as it will be the regulators and local communities who will determine if projects are permitted.

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