Legislation causing concern in the offshore wind energy sector in the US has drawn the ire of another industry organisation.
The legislation has already been heavily criticised by the National Ocean Industries Association, which said it was “unnecessary and could slow the pace of offshore wind development,” and the American Wind Energy Association, which described it as “redundant.”
The House Appropriations Committee has adopted language calling for a one-year Department of Defense (DoD) study on the impact of offshore wind turbines, which allegedly “when arranged in large arrays may cause interference to radars and sonar.”
The Business Network for Offshore Wind said the language in the Defense and Interior appropriations (DoI) bills that could require the DoD produce a report on offshore wind’s ‘potential impacts to national security,’ was “a lightweight tactic about a fabricated conflict that does not actually exist.”
The business network said the DoI and Bureau of Ocean Energy Management already use a process that takes into account any potential issues between the military and offshore wind projects. They do so very early in the process of planning offshore wind projects, through intergovernmental task force meetings at which the DoD has a presence.
“The US offshore wind industry intends to be a good neighbour to all existing ocean users,” said its president and chief executive Liz Burdock. “To spend a minute considering the language in this legislation is a waste of taxpayers’ money. It should be removed immediately.”