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Scientists from the USGS Western Ecological Research Center (WERC) are authors on a new framework for addressing the impacts of offshore wind farms on marine bird populations.

Offshore wind energy is expanding globally, with the potential to be an important source of renewable energy. Offshore wind infrastructure can pose significant risks to seabirds, already the most highly threatened group of birds. Seabird populations may be affected via displacement and collision with offshore wind infrastructure. USGS scientists study the abundance and distribution of seabirds in offshore areas, critical information for planners looking to mitigate the impacts of wind energy on seabirds. USGS WERC scientists Josh Adams and Emma Kelsey provided their expertise on monitoring of seabird abundance and distribution at-sea and seabird vulnerability to offshore wind energy to the new framework.

The publication presents a broad framework that can be applied globally for assessing and mitigating the impacts of offshore wind energy development. In the United States, offshore wind energy is growing on the East Coast and is under consideration on the West Coast. The new framework, funded by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM), will inform planning for future offshore wind development.

 

Read more about this publication in a press release from the University of California, Santa Cruz: https://news.ucsc.edu/2022/11/offshore-wind-energy.html

 

Croll, D.A., Ellis, A.A., Adams, J., et al. 2022. Framework for Assessing and Mitigating the Impacts of Offshore Wind Energy. Framework for assessing and mitigating the impacts of offshore wind energy development on marine birds. Biological Conservation, 276, p.109795 https://doi.org/10.1016/j.biocon.2022.109795

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