Enrollment Opens for Vineyard Wind 1 Fisheries Compensation

Source: www.gulfoilandgas.com 3/4/2024, Location: North America

Avangrid, Inc. (NYSE: AGR), a leading sustainable energy company and member of the Iberdrola Group, and Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners (CIP), a global leader in green energy investment and in offshore wind development through its affiliate Vineyard Offshore, announced that the Vineyard Wind 1 project has launched its Fisheries Compensatory Mitigation Program. The third party administered program seeks to provide fair, equitable compensation to commercial fishermen for economic impacts attributable to the project’s construction, operations, and decommissioning activities. The launch of the program opens a 90-day window for fishermen to qualify for compensation at www.vw1fisheriescomp.com.

“Throughout the development of Vineyard Wind 1, we have focused on building relationships with local fishing communities while ensuring that each of these vital industries can co-exist to the benefit of the entire Northeast region,” said Avangrid CEO Pedro Azagra. “By launching this program we are making good on our promise to work with the fishing industry to address financial impacts related to the development of this project, and we encourage any commercial fishermen affected to apply for eligibility.”

"As Massachusetts leads the nation in offshore wind development, sustaining our nation-leading seafood industry is an equally important priority," said Secretary of Energy and Environmental Affairs Rebecca Tepper. "For centuries, commercial fisheries have played an essential role in our state's history, culture, and economy. The Vineyard Wind Fisheries Compensation Fund will bolster our commercial fisheries during this time of transition to clean energy—we hope this fund can be a model for ensuring offshore wind and commercial fisheries thrive together."

To support the program, Vineyard Wind 1 has established three escrow funds to compensate affected fishermen in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New Jersey, and New York. Compensation may also be available to shoreside businesses in Massachusetts and Rhode Island.

The launch of the program opens a 90-day window, until June 3, 2024, for commercial fishermen to apply for eligibility and qualify for compensation payments based on defined eligibility criteria. Critically, this 90-day timeframe is the only opportunity that fishermen will have to qualify for compensation over the life of the program. Fishermen will not need to demonstrate economic impacts from Vineyard Wind 1 to qualify for the program or receive compensation payments.

The program is open to commercial fishing vessel owners/lessees in Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, and Rhode Island who can demonstrate historical fishing activities in the lease area, OCS-A 0501; and shoreside businesses in Massachusetts and Rhode Island. Information about the shoreside business portion of the program will be available at a later date.

“CZM was pleased to work with the Division of Marine Fisheries to secure these mitigation funds from Vineyard Wind for the commercial fishing industry,” said Massachusetts Office of Coastal Zone Management Acting Director Tyler Soleau. “These funds were actively negotiated with stakeholders through the Fisheries Working Group and will help ensure that Massachusetts’ historic fisheries remain safe and profitable as the important offshore wind industry emerges and grows.”

"Division of Marine Fisheries is glad to see Vineyard Wind Fisheries Compensation Fund, negotiated alongside our commercial fishing partners and the Office of Coastal Zone Management (CZM), provide real benefits for our impacted fishermen and local businesses," said Division of Marine Fisheries Director Dan McKiernan. "DMF is committed to working closely with impacted individuals to connect them with this critical support."

Vineyard Wind is hosting open house and tabling events in the month of March to assist fishermen with their applications and answer any questions they may have.


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