An Offshore Wind Energy Developer’s Perspective on Permitting

Dr. Paul Phifer is the Permitting Manager for Atlantic Shores Offshore Wind, a 50/50 joint venture between EDF-Renewables and Shell New Energies.  Atlantic Shores is developing lease area OCS-0499, which includes 183,000 acres off the coast of Atlantic City, New Jersey.  Dr. Phifer will talk about the numerous federal and state permitting processes, including with the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, the National Marine Fisheries Service, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection.  Given the early stages of offshore wind development in the U.S., many of the associated rules and practices are still being refined, providing beneficial and difficult flexibility.  He will also discuss some of the ways technology and stakeholders influence the process. 

 Dr. Phifer joined Atlantic Shores Offshore Wind as Permitting Manager in November 2019, following a 20-year career in environmental conservation and permitting for the U.S. government. At the federal level, he worked on a diverse portfolio of issues including international environmental treaties for the U.S. Department of State and for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, endangered species conservation, natural resource damage assessment and restoration, and permitting associated with energy development. For the last decade, Mr. Phifer managed thirteen offices from Maine to Virginia, overseeing permitting projects related to onshore and offshore wind energy, natural gas pipelines and hyrdroelectric power. In this role he ensured coordination and cooperation between multiple state and federal agencies including the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, U.S. Coast Guard, Army Corps of Engineers and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. Dr. Phifer holds a PhD in conservation biology from the University of Minnesota, and a bachelor’s degree in philosophy from Boston College.

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Thursday, September 24, 2020 - 4:00pm
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