Project Name: Offshore Wind Site Suitability Studies
Summary: Initial screening using advanced GIS analysis
Client: Fishermen’s Energy
Project Location: Outer Continental Shelf Sites off of Massachusetts, New Jersey, Rhode Island and Virginia
• Marine Renewable Siting
• Geospatial Analysis & Modeling
Project Timeframe: 2011 - 2012
Relationship with Client: Since 2011
The Federal Bureau of Ocean Energy, Management, Regulation and Enforcement (BOEM) is responsible for the regulation and approval of offshore wind projects that will be developed upon the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) and has initiated efforts to begin leasing Wind Energy Areas (WEAs) of the OCS through a series of Calls for Interest.
Kleinschmidt has been working with Fishermen’s Energy to prepare responses to BOEM for WEAs in Massachusetts, New Jersey, Rhode Island and Virginia. An important component of each of these responses was a detailed GIS evaluation of the areas in question, including environmental and engineering appraisal using geospatial analysis and other GIS tools to identify the optimum choice of OCS blocks for development. Kleinschmidt has developed a geospatial decision support framework that incorporates of a wide array of publicly available site-specific information on engineering, environmental and other marine spatial uses. Kleinschmidt uses the framework and raw data to derive relevant geospatial information rasters, such as effective engineering cost, ecological density and diversity, and electrical transmission costs. These derived layers are combined to form an overall map of suitability to assist in determining the overall quality of each OCS block from the perspective of offshore wind development.
Kleinschmidt’s detailed up-front screening to determine the best project sites will help Fisherman’s Energy avoid future problems (i.e., engineering, permitting, etc.) and will lead to more defensible and easier to permit projects.