By Nancy Kirshner-Rodriguez, Business Network for Offshore Wind
California State Senator Mike McGuire, Chair of the Joint Committee on Fisheries and Aquaculture (JCFA) recently held a public hearing in Eureka to discuss offshore wind power development and to consider the impacts on California’s fisheries and wildlife. This was the first California state legislative hearing focused solely on offshore wind power.
“The burgeoning Pacific offshore wind energy industry is going to be a critical component of our state’s energy supply, and as it picks up steam, we need to make sure we are taking a close look at any potential environmental impacts it could have on our state’s fisheries,” Sen. McGuire said. The Senator’s district includes the Humboldt Call area identified by BOEM for potential leasing at a future date.
The hearing included testimony from Federal and State Government representatives and industry, environmental and fisheries leaders. Presentations and discussion focused on how wind energy can be compatible with protecting California’s fisheries; how to mitigate potential environmental impacts in the sea and on land; and why wind energy is important to the State’s energy supply. Nancy Kirshner-Rodriguez represented the Network and provided comments explaining the Network’s commitment to work with all parties to build the supply chain in California. In addition, the Network’s experience on the East Coast and working with global partners on marine life and workforce development challenges make it a valuable resource for the state. Sen. McGuire committed to continue holding public hearings and to working with all interested parties as the opportunities for development grow. Materials from the hearing, including a link to the archived hearing video, are available online. For more information contact Nancy Kirshner-Rodriguez at [email protected].