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BOEM releases Mid- and South Atlantic environmental impact statement for public comment

NORFOLK, Va. — Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) Director Tommy P. Beaudreau has announced that the Department of Interior is taking steps to assess the conventional and renewable energy resource potential in the Mid- and South Atlantic. The draft Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (PEIS), released for public comment, will help inform future decisions about whether, and if so where, leasing would be appropriate in these areas.

This milestone advances BOEM’s regionally-tailored approach to Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) exploration and development, consistent with the Proposed OCS Oil and Gas Leasing Program for 2012-2017, which stresses the importance of better understanding resource potential in the Mid- and South Atlantic. The draft PEIS assesses proposed geological and geophysical (G&G) activities, including seismic and other offshore surveys, in the Mid- and South-Atlantic planning areas.

Interior Secretary Ken Salazar and Beaudreau traveled to Norfolk, Va., where they met with personnel from Fugro Atlantic, which provides geotechnical, hydrogeologic, environmental and marine survey services.

“Both government and industry rely on G&G surveys, using state-of-the-art technology, for information about the location and extent of our offshore resources,” said Beaudreau. “This analysis will move us forward toward developing an updated body of scientific information about the Mid- and South Atlantic regions that will support future decisions about potential conventional and renewable resource development.”

The PEIS evaluates the potential environmental effects of multiple G&G activities in these OCS planning areas and, where needed, outlines mitigation and monitoring measures that will reduce or eliminate potential impacts.

To access the draft PEIS, go to www.boem.gov/oil-and-gas-energy-program/GOMR/GandG.aspx. The PEIS and related documents will also be available for public inspection tomorrow in the Federal Register at: http://www.archives.gov/federal-register/public-inspection/index.html.

Public meetings to receive comments are scheduled in Jacksonville, Fla.; Savannah, Ga.; Charleston, S.C; Norfolk, Va; Wilmington, N.C.; Annapolis, Md.; Wilmington, Del; and Atlantic City, N.J., to allow the public to comment on the draft PEIS and assist BOEM in developing the final PEIS. The complete public meeting schedule is available online at: www.boem.gov/oil-and-gas-energy-program/GOMR/GandG.aspx.

03/28/2012

 

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