Oregon Adds Wave And Offshore Wind Zones To Its Sea Plan

Jan 28, 2013

Oregon adopted new zoning rules for its territorial sea yesterday. The rules set aside about 2 percent of the Oregon coast for wave and offshore wind energy. Amelia Templeton from our EarthFix team reports the decision was not welcomed by some Dungeness crab fisherman.

The new rules identify where wave and off-shore wind energy projects should go. The goal: to avoid conflict with surfers, commercial fisherman and wildlife. But not everyone’s happy with the four sites the state approved for wave energy. Two of them are near Reedsport on the South Coast.

Furman: “You couldn’t find a worse place to put a wave energy facility as far as an impact to fisheries on the coast.”

That’s Nick Furman with the Oregon Dungeness Crab Commission. He says the Reedsport sites are in prime crab fishing territory. The other two sites are off Oregon’s north coast near Astoria and Neskowin.

State officials say fishermen will only be kept out of the development zones if wave energy buoys are actually built and anchored there. That could be years or decades away.

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