Public Listening Session: Offshore Wind Power and Mid-Atlantic Fisheries

August 5, 2013

(302) 674-2331 (ext. 261)

Guest Speaker: Dr. Jeremy Firestone
University of Delaware Professor of Marine Policy and Legal Studies

Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council Meeting (view full agenda)
Tuesday August 13, 2013 - 5:00 pm to 6:00 pm
Double Tree by Hilton Wilmington, 4727 Concord Pike, Wilmington, DE 19803
And via the internet at 

The topic of the Council’s next public listening session will be Offshore Wind Power and Mid-Atlantic Fisheries. Guest speaker at the listening session will be Dr. Jeremy Firestone, Professor of Marine Policy and Legal Studies at the University of Delaware. Dr. Firestone’s current research focuses on the public preferences, economic costs, and legal frameworks associated with wind power development in Delaware and Cape Cod. During the listening session, Dr. Firestone will discuss recent developments in wind power siting and construction and how they may affect fisheries and fishing communities. 

The University of Delaware is a leader in ocean wind research through their Center for Carbon-free Power Integration. Their wind research efforts have included preliminary analysis of potential conflicts between ocean wind power development and commercial and recreational fishing.


Interest in the mid-Atlantic region for offshore wind energy development has progressed steadily since late 2010 when Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar launched a ‘Smart from the Start’ wind energy initiative to facilitate siting, leasing, and construction of new projects on the Atlantic Outer Continental Shelf. A major milestone in this effort occurred last week when the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) auctioned two leases for an area of nearly 165,000 acres off the coast of Rhode Island and Massachusetts during the nation’s first-ever competitive lease sale for renewable energy in federal waters. A second lease sale for an area off the coast of Virginia is scheduled for September 4.

While offshore wind development holds the potential to create jobs and produce a cleaner and more sustainable energy supply, it could also have adverse impacts on commercial and recreational fisheries and other marine user groups. The Council is working to enhance communication with BOEM and other state and regional agencies involved in planning and leasing decisions and the fishing community. 

About Listening Sessions

Listening sessions are held during each Council meeting as an open and informal opportunity for the public to interact with Council members and leadership, as well as with experts in a range of relevant fields.  Most listening sessions focus on a specific topic of current interest. Listening sessions are always accessible via the internet at If there is a particular topic that you would like us to consider for a future listening session, please contact Mary Clark at