Chairman Henry Waxman (D-CA) of the U.S. House Energy and Commerce Committee released yesterday an updated version of H.R. 2454, the House bill designed to promote green energy and address global climate change. The document, called a "Chairman's mark" in Capitol Hill parlance, would require that "ecosystem-based management" of ocean resources serve as the foundation for all marine resource planning, as opposed to resource-based management. The bill also mandates a study of regional marine spatial planning by DOI, FERC, and NOAA that would identify a mechanism for formally installing a marine spatial planning regime and requires the U.S. Council on Environmental Quality to determine whether the approach outlined in the study ought to be followed in developing policies for renewable energy on the OCS. An official with the American Wind Energy Association told E&E [subscription required] that her organization is not opposed to marine spatial planning, but that she is concerned that offshore renewable energy projects currently under development could be delayed as the marine spatial planning policy is developed and implemented.
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