Responsible development of offshore wind energy is critical to U.S. efforts to mitigate climate change, grow the clean energy sector and benefit from a thriving New Blue Economy.

While the Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) is the lead agency for offshore energy development under the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act, NOAA’s science,
stewardship, planning and regulatory responsibilities enable sustainable, safe, inclusive and informed offshore wind energy development. 

In support of the Biden-Harris Administration’s goal to responsibly deploy 30 gigawatts of offshore wind energy by 2030, while protecting biodiversity and promoting ocean co-use, NOAA is committed to a strong legal, regulatory and science-based foundation to support this emerging use of our marine waters.

Key aspects of NOAA’s responsibilities related to offshore wind energy development include:

  • Minimizing and mitigating potential impacts to marine life, critical ecosystems and ocean uses, such as fishing and recreation, by facilitating compliance with relevant marine resource management laws.
  • Engaging with federal, state, local, and tribal government partners and the private sector to advance the state of the science related to offshore wind, and supporting stakeholder engagement that connects with coastal communities, mariners and ocean users.
  • Providing key data on the ocean and atmosphere, and interactions between ocean uses, that enable smart and efficient decision-making for offshore wind energy development. 
  • Promoting safe and efficient offshore wind siting, buildout and operations throughout the lifetime of the wind farm by providing forecasts, observations and ocean mapping data resources, which directly lower the cost of energy.

NOAA’s active engagement in the offshore wind energy development process and support for inclusive partnerships at regional and national scales inform transparent and data-driven decisions.