UNIVERSITY OF MAINE’S DEEPWATER OFFSHORE ?· UNIVERSITY OF MAINE’S . DEEPWATER OFFSHORE FLOATING…

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  • DOE/EA-1792

    FINAL

    ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT

    FOR

    UNIVERSITY OF MAINES DEEPWATER OFFSHORE FLOATING

    WIND TURBINE TESTING AND DEMONSTRATION PROJECT

    GULF OF MAINE

    U.S. Department of Energy

    Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Golden Field Office

    SEPTEMBER 2011

  • DOE/EA-1792

    FINAL

    ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT

    FOR

    UNIVERSITY OF MAINES DEEPWATER OFFSHORE FLOATING

    WIND TURBINE TESTING AND DEMONSTRATION PROJECT

    GULF OF MAINE

    U.S. Department of Energy

    Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Golden Field Office

    SEPTEMBER 2011

  • DOE/EA-1792 iii September 2011

    ACRONYMS AND ABBREVIATIONS

    APE area of potential effects CFR Code of Federal Regulations dBA decibel on the A-weighted scale, used to approximate the human ears response

    to sound DMR Maine Department of Marine Resources DOE U.S. Department of Energy DPS Distinct population segment EA Environmental Assessment EFH essential fish habitat EPA U.S. Environmental Protection Agency ESA Endangered Species Act FAD Fish aggregation device GIS Geographic Information Systems MSA Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation Act NASC Nautical Area Scattering Coefficient NEPA National Environmental Policy Act NERACOOS Northeastern Regional Association of Coastal Ocean Observing Systems NMFS National Marine Fisheries Service NOAA National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration NREL National Renewable Energy Laboratory PNNL Pacific Northwest National Laboratory SHPO State Historic Preservation Office TLP tension leg platform UMaine University of Maine USACE U.S. Army Corps of Engineers U.S.C. United States Code USCG U.S. Coast Guard USFWS U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

  • Contents

    DOE/EA-1792 iv September 2011

    CONTENTS

    Section Page

    1. INTRODUCTION .................................................................................................................................. 1 1.1 National Environmental Policy Act ............................................................................................... 1 1.2 Background .................................................................................................................................... 1 1.3 Purpose and Need ........................................................................................................................... 3

    1.3.1 DOEs Purpose and Need .......................................................................................................... 3 1.3.2 USACEs Purpose and Need ..................................................................................................... 3 1.3.3 UMaines Purpose and Need ..................................................................................................... 3

    1.4 Public and Agency Involvement .................................................................................................... 3 1.4.1 Public Scoping ........................................................................................................................... 3

    1.4.1.1 Summary of Scoping Responses .......................................................................................... 3 1.4.2 Consultation Actions ................................................................................................................. 5 1.4.3 Draft Environmental Assessment .............................................................................................. 6 1.4.4 Changes between Draft and final Environmental Assessment .................................................. 6

    1.4.4.1 Battery and Electrical Grid Mimicking ................................................................................ 7 1.4.4.2 Power Dissipation System .................................................................................................... 8 1.4.4.3 Floating Platform Tendon Lines ........................................................................................... 8 1.4.4.4 Anchor Position Pipes and Cable Lines ............................................................................... 9 1.4.4.5 Summary ............................................................................. Error! Bookmark not defined.

    2. DOE PROPOSED ACTION AND ALTERNATIVES ..................................................................... 11 2.1 DOEs Proposed Action ............................................................................................................... 11 2.2 USACEs Proposed Project .......................................................................................................... 11 2.3 University of Maines Proposed Project ...................................................................................... 11

    2.3.1 Background ............................................................................................................................. 11 2.3.2 Selection of the University of Maine Deepwater Offshore Wind Test Site ............................ 12 2.3.3 Wind Turbine .......................................................................................................................... 14 2.3.4 Turbine Platform ..................................................................................................................... 15 2.3.5 Mooring and Anchoring System ............................................................................................. 17 2.3.6 Installation ............................................................................................................................... 18 2.3.7 Operations and Maintenance ................................................................................................... 20 2.3.8 Removal .................................................................................................................................. 21

    2.3.8.1 Removal of Floating Turbine ............................................................................................. 21 2.3.8.2 Removal of Anchoring/Mooring System ........................................................................... 21

    2.4 No-Action Alternative .................................................................................................................. 22 2.5 Required Agency Permits and Approval Types ........................................................................... 22 2.6 Applicant-Committed Measures................................................................................................... 23

    2.6.1 Water Resources ...................................................................................................................... 23 2.6.2 Biological Resources ............................................................................................................... 23 2.6.3 Noise and Vibration ................................................................................................................. 24 2.6.4 Ocean Use ............................................................................................................................... 25 2.6.5 Aesthetic Resources ................................................................................................................ 25 2.6.6 Cultural Resources .................................................................................................................. 26

    3. AFFECTED ENVIRONMENT AND ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS ........................................ 27 3.1 Considerations Not Carried Forward for Further Analysis .......................................................... 27

    3.1.1 Air Quality ............................................................................................................................... 27 3.1.2 Terrestrial Resources ............................................................................................................... 27 3.1.3 Wild and Scenic Rivers ........................................................................................................... 27 3.1.4 Land Use ................................................................................................................................. 28

  • Contents

    DOE/EA-1792 v September 2011

    3.1.5 Terrestrial Transportation and Traffic ..................................................................................... 28 3.1.6 Infrastructure and Energy Use ................................................................................................. 28 3.1.7 Electromagnetic Fields ............................................................................................................ 28 3.1.8 Intentional Destructive Acts .................................................................................................... 28

    3.2 Geophysical Resources ................................................................................................................ 28 3.2.1 Affected Environment ............................................................................................................. 28 3.2.2 Environmental Impacts Related to Geophysical Resources .................................................... 32 3.2.3 No-Action Alternative ............................................................................................................. 32

    3.3 Water Resources ........................................................................................................................... 32 3.3.1 Affected Environment ............................................................................................................. 32 3.3.2 Environmental Impacts Related to Water Resources .............................................................. 34

    3.

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