MMS Gives Key Support to Workshop on Ecological Effects of Wave Energy Development in the Pacific

The U.S. Department of the Interior's Minerals Management Service (MMS) to Present Information on Environmental Risk Analysis and Wave Energy at the Ecological Effects of Wave Energy Development Workshop at the Hatfield Marine Science Center in Newport, Oregon, on October 11-12, 2007.

NEWS RELEASE

U.S. Department of the Interior Minerals Management Service Office of Public Affairs

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, October 9, 2007

MMS Gives Key Support to Workshop on Ecological Effects of Wave Energy Development in the Pacific Northwest
Agency to Present Information on Environmental Risk Analysis and Wave Energy

Herndon, VA- Scientists from the U.S. Department of the Interior's Minerals Management Service (MMS) will join colleagues from federal and state government, academia, and industry to examine potential effects of wave energy at the Ecological Effects of Wave Energy Development in the Pacific Northwest Workshop at the Hatfield Marine Science Center in Newport, Oregon, on October 11-12, 2007.

"As the Nation moves closer toward harnessing offshore alternative energy, collaboration and regional partnerships will prove essential to the understanding of any effects of emerging technologies on the marine environment," said Maureen Bornholdt, MMS's Alternative Energy and Alternate Use Program manager. "This workshop demonstrates a real commitment in Oregon and the Pacific Northwest to balance wave energy development with environmental protection."

MMS is a major co-sponsor of the scientific workshop along with Oregon State University, the Oregon Department of Land Development and Conservation, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration-Fisheries, Communication Partnership for Science and the Sea, the Oregon Wave Energy Trust, several Pacific Northwest utility companies and others.

"Bringing together experts from a variety of scientific disciplines will help not only broaden the depth and scope of our discussions but will also establish a network of regional experts that can work together to assess impacts of regional wave energy projects," said Bornholdt.

MMS will also give a presentation on assessing potential impacts of wave energy development on the environment. Other topics to be explored during the workshop include physical effects (waves, currents and sediment transport), effects on fish, habitat effects, effects of ocean bottom disturbance, and effects on marine mammals and seabirds. More information on the workshop is available online at http://hmsc.oregonstate.edu/waveenergy/index.html

The Energy Policy Act of 2005 gives MMS the authority to regulate alternative energy projects on the Outer Continental Shelf. Alternative energy includes wind, wave, ocean current, and solar. For more on MMS's Alternative Energy and Alternate Use program, go to: www.mms.gov/offshore/RenewableEnergy/RenewableEnergyMain.htm


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