Massachusetts Creates Ocean Use Task Force

May 03, 2003

Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney has created an Ocean Management Task Force on April 26th to address gaps in ocean-use policies. The task force will make recommendations regarding industrial projects offshore, including pipelines and aquaculture, and it will regulate offshore wind farms.

The goal is to maximize public use, utility, and enjoyment from the ocean while protecting its ecosystems. "Right now, private projects in public waters happen on a first-come, first-serve basis," Romney said. "This is a first-in-the-nation approach to creating sound ocean management policies." The task force will include individuals with expertise on local, state, and federal coastal issues.

State waters generally reach three miles offshore. This will likely affect some projects but not others. The New York company Winergy, for instance, has submitted proposals for seven wind farms in state waters. Other projects, like a 130-turbine farm proposed off Cape Cod's Horseshoe Shoal by Cape Wind Associates, may not fall within the purview of the task force.

For more information, see the April 2002 article by Boston Globe writer Mitch Adams and reprinted by the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative.