Around New England

Fed Corrects ‘Quote Error’ About How Much Damage Offshore Wind Will Do To Scalloping

March 22, 2019

A federal fishing administrator asked about offshore wind’s effect on scalloping told a newspaper that “The damage could be significant,” then took it back after a pro-wind-turbines federal agency got involved.

Michael Pentony, the Greater Atlantic fishing administrator for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, gave a videotaped interview to the New Bedford Standard-Times on Wednesday, March 20, during which he expressed concern about wind turbines in the Atlantic Ocean, including a project planned for the waters south of Martha’s Vineyard.

The newspaper contacted the federal Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, which regulates wind turbines, for comment.

Subsequently, the story changed. A spokesman for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration contacted the Standard-Times about what the spokesman called a “quote error” concerning its administrator.

Then the administrator changed his tune.

As the Standard-Times put it in a news story Friday, March 22:

“In a subsequent telephone interview, Pentony said he wanted to correct the record and re-characterize what he said. With regard to offshore wind posing a risk of significant damage to the scallop industry, ‘my position is unequivocally no, it does not,’ he said.”

The project, known as Vineyard Wind, has support from key state and federal government officials.

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