Rhode Island and Massachusetts Wind Energy Area
- Secretary Salazar announced the Department of the Interior's "Smart from the Start" initiative on November 23, 2010. As part of this initiative, a critical element is the identification of Wind Energy Areas (WEA) on the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) off the Atlantic coast. WEAs are offshore locations that appear most suitable for wind energy development. Secretary Salazar identified the WEAs on February 7, 2011 in a joint announcement with Secretary Chu of the U.S. Department of Energy as part of the National Strategic Work Plan for Offshore Wind. Data has been and will continue to be collected for these high priority areas to inform government and industry assessments and planning, allowing a more efficient process for permitting and siting responsible development. Requests for Interest (RFIs) and Calls for Information have been or will be issued for these new WEAs to support lease sale environmental assessments. The Massachusetts Office of Coastal Zone Management downloaded the Current Atlantic OCS Wind Energy Areas shapefile from the BOEM Smart from the Start website (http://www.boem.gov/Renewable-Energy-Program/Smart-from-the-Start/Index.aspx) on June 14, 2012. The Rhode Island and Massachusetts Wind Energy Area was extracted from the shapefile and the data were projected to the Massachusetts State Plane Coordinate System, Mainland Zone (FIPS zone 2001), meters.
- Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Office of Renewable Energy
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