The US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is asking the public for input on the data it should be using to develop aquaculture and offshore wind projects in the Caribbean region.
The input NOAA gets “will be used to inform potential coastal and ocean development activities in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands (USVI), such as development of renewable energy facilities, aquaculture and other blue economy sectors,” according to a recent notice.
Specifically, NOAA is seeking information on:
(1) Specific datasets related to ocean sectors, natural resources, and/or human activities you recommend NOAA use in marine spatial studies.
(2) Major concerns you have related to use of any specific datasets that may be used in marine spatial studies.
(3) Major concerns you have related to the impacts of new marine industries on ecological systems in Puerto Rico and/or the USVI.
(4) Major concerns you have related to the impact of new marine industries on other ocean industries in Puerto Rico and/or the USVI.
(5) Major concerns you have related to gaps in scientific knowledge or data that could impact marine spatial study efforts.
(6) Specific data or information you recommend NOAA or other partners collect, if it is not currently available or has not been previously collected.
(7) Ways in which NOAA can better engage and collaborate with the public and Territorial communities to promote economic, social, and ecological resilience as well as protect trust resources.
To get that input, NOAA will be holding two public meetings in St. Croix, USVI on August 28-29 and in San Juan, Puerto Rico on August 31-September 1, according to the notice.
Written comments can also be submitted by September 30, 2023.
For information on how to register for the public meetings or submit written comments, check out the notice here.