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  • Writer's pictureBen Martens

Statement from Maine’s Fishing Community on Offshore Wind Development

January 25, 2021

on behalf of:

Patrice McCarron, Maine Lobstermen’s Association

Ben Martens, Maine Coast Fishermen’s Association

Annie Tselikis, Maine Lobster Dealers Association

Rocky Alley, Maine Lobstering Union

Paul Anderson, Maine Center for Coastal Fisheries

Sheila Dassatt, Downeast Lobstermen’s Association

Maine fishermen are deeply committed to clean energy and protecting the environment. We draw our

livelihoods from the ocean and recognize the fragility of our shared marine environment. Maine

fishermen understand and support the need to develop clean renewable energy sources, but do not

share the Governor’s vision to achieve this through rushed offshore wind development in the Gulf of


While the Gulf appears vast and without borders, it is, in reality, an area well‐managed by generations of

fishermen who feed our nation with healthy, sustainably harvested seafood.

“The Gulf of Maine is a rich and nourishing workplace and Maine’s fishermen have long been stewards

of its tremendous resources. We advocate that Maine continue our industry’s long tradition of

protecting, rather than industrializing, our precious ocean resources,” said Ben Martens, Executive

Director of the Maine Coast Fishermen’s Association.

Maine’s fishing community is deeply concerned that wind development will end our fishing heritage

which has sustained our coastal communities for centuries and is an integral part of Maine’s identity.

Without dedicated research proving otherwise, we are skeptical that offshore wind can deliver on its

promise of affordable clean energy as promised by global energy companies.

Nineteen-year-old fisherman Josh Todd of Chebeague Island worries, “I'm an 11th generation fisherman

and I am very proud of my family's legacy. I don’t want to be the last generation in my family to fish

because we are replaced with another industry.”

As professionals with a deep understanding of our ocean environment, Maine fishermen have

specialized knowledge, experience, and perspective that should be fully understood before planning any

offshore wind project. Undue haste in a time of a deadly pandemic will not foster this collaboration with

fishermen, and ultimately, will result in an unreliable and untrustworthy basis for future planning


Rock Alley, president of the Maine Lobstering Union notes, “The fishing community has taken care of

the sea for generations yet our knowledge is continually disregarded or minimized. We need time to do

this project the right way or not at all.”

Maine’s fishing community does not support offshore wind implemented through careless timelines and

uncertain technology, and feels there are better ways to achieve Maine’s clean energy future. We will

continue to engage in conversations and demand accountability through the use of sound science,

adequate planning timelines, and thorough economic, environmental, and cost-benefit analyses of

proposed projects.

“The state of Maine should be wary of trading its fishing heritage by entering a race to fulfill empty

promises from international energy companies,” warned Patrice McCarron, Executive Director of the

Maine Lobstermen’s Association.



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