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Science Plan

The four RWSC sectors are engaging with scientific experts in several taxa-based Subcommittees to develop an Integrated Science Plan for Wildlife, Habitat, and Offshore Wind Energy in the U.S. Atlantic, or โ€œScience Planโ€ by mid-2023.

The Science Plan will articulate data collection and analysis activities needed for identifying, assessing, and avoiding impacts to the distribution, abundance, and behavior of wildlife due to offshore wind development. The Science Plan will also provide a roadmap for the four Sectors to fund those activities.

The foundation of the Science Plan is the RWSC database of ongoing and pending offshore wind and wildlife research and data collection activities. Investigators and funders can email us to add project information to the database.

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Science Plan Structure

The RWSC Science Plan will be organized by taxa and by subregion along the Atlantic coast. Subregions of interest roughly align with BOEM wind planning areas and include:

  • Gulf of Maine
  • Southern New England
  • NY/NJ Bight
  • Central Atlantic
  • South

For each subregion, the Science Plan will describe the focal or priority species; existing and pending data collection; a definition of existing conditions and recent trends; how to detect changes in distribution, abundance, and behavior.

The Science Plan will also note opportunities for coordination and collaboration across subregions, including best practices for data standards, management, storage, and sharing.

 

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Marine Mammal Subcommittee

Subcommittee Coordinator: Debbie Brill, Duke University

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Bird & Bat Subcommittee

Subcommittee Coordinator: Zara Dowling, University of Massachusetts, Amherst

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Sea Turtle Subcommittee

Subcommittee Coordinator: Susan Barco, Barco Marine Consulting

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Habitat & Ecosystem Subcommittee

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Protected Fish Species Subcommittee

This Subcommittee hasn’t formed yet – stay tuned!

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Cross-Taxa Subcommittee

This Subcommittee hasn’t formed yet – stay tuned!