In order to increase transparency and consistency for the regulated community, Tribes, other government partners, and interested stakeholders, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) today published two final guidance documents: the “NOI Checklist” and the “Marine Acoustic Modeling and Measurement Guidelines.”
“NOI Checklist” Guidelines
The “NOI Checklist,” is based on BOEM’s regulations and describes how BOEM will process incomplete Construction and Operations Plan (COP) submissions. The checklist is designed to: 1) provide clarity to lessees; 2) establish a pre-application and pre-NOI process with lessees and cooperating agencies that will benefit all stakeholders; 3) improve the efficiency of proposed offshore wind project reviews by avoiding delays to the NEPA analysis after the NOI has been published.
In Oct. 2022, BOEM published draft guidelines and opened a 45-day public comment period. The final “NOI Checklist” guidelines address stakeholder comments by establishing a structured pre-application and pre-NOI process for each project, which integrate the “NOI Checklist” into the development of permitting schedules under FAST-41 and the Fiscal Responsibility Act. By following the “NOI Checklist,” applicants can streamline the submission process and focus on stakeholder engagement and the environmental and technical evaluation of their renewable energy projects. The link to the final guidelines is below:
- Guidance on Information Needed for Issuance of a Notice of Intent (NOI) Under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) for a Construction and Operations Plan (“NOI Checklist”)
Marine Acoustic Modeling and Measurement Guidelines
Alongside the NOI Checklist, BOEM issued recommendations to lessees as they develop the acoustic and exposure models of impact pile-driving, and for sound-field measurements, to be included with their COP. The link to the final guidelines is below:
- BOEM Nationwide Recommendations for Impact Pile Driving Sound Exposure Modeling and Sound Field Measurement for Offshore Wind Construction and Operations Plans (“Marine Acoustic Modeling and Measurement Guidelines”)
BOEM remains committed to the stewardship of the U.S. Outer Continental Shelf’s (OCS) energy and mineral resources, as well as protecting the human and natural environment that the development of those resources may impact. The final guidance documents are part of BOEM’s ongoing efforts to provide clear guidance to facilitate the responsible development of renewable energy resources on the OCS.
-- BOEM --
The Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) is responsible for America’s offshore energy and mineral resources. The bureau promotes energy independence, environmental protection and economic development through responsible, science-based management of energy and mineral resources on the U.S. Outer Continental Shelf.