I recently wrote an article titled “The Red Headed Stepchild of Offshore Wind” and it referenced the apparent void and lack of inclusion of the “For-Hire” fishing industry to Wind Farm Development.
I want to be clear – I was not I saying Offshore Wind developers haven’t done their best to reach out. In their defense, it’s not for a lack of trying and to the best of my knowledge, they were told one thing from certain groups who promised them the moon and delivered nothing.
Communicating with the “For-Hire” and recreational fishing industry group is kinda’ like herding cats because they are all over the place. However, if you know how to “speak feline,” getting their attention is relatively easy.
Anyway, within 3 days of posting the article, my phone and email blew up from people within the “For-Hire” fishing community. They want to learn more about Offshore Wind and some of them asking how they could actually get involved.
- When is this happening?
- When are they coming?
- Where are they going?
- How many of them are going to be built?
- How can I get involved?
- Can we fish them?
This was almost unbelievable because I didn’t promote or market the article at all.
The intent of the article was to act as subtle message to the developers that there is a large user group out there who are hungry for more information.
The phone calls kept coming and a few came in from Sport Fishing Boat owners too. Most of which were curious to hear my opinion about how Offshore Wind will affect Sportfishing. (I was only too happy to share my opinion.)
I wonder what would happen if I spent a few bucks on Facebook and Google ads and actually promoted the post?
Could you imagine how many fishermen would get behind Offshore Wind if there were authentic videos of the marine life they are supporting, videos of people diving and fishing on them? Picture in your minds eye for a minute what that wold look like.
What’s My Point?
My point is this: I believe there is a massive group of fishermen out there who would gladly support Offshore Wind if they were made aware of the benefits.
All that is needed to get this group of stakeholders on board is for a few people from within the “For-Hire” and recreational fishing community who “Speak-Feline” to begin getting their attention so they can be included, get educated and excited about the benefits of additional structure offshore.
OFFSHORE WIND TURBINE PLATFORMS ATTRACT & HOLD FISH – LOTS OF FISH!
Did you now that for a time during last summer, the Fluke fishing was very slow and the only place that held any decent size Fluke was around the Block Island turbines?
Yep – I have a cousin who works on a charter boat and he let it slip one day when I was hanging around the dock.
Furthermore, there is always a fleet of boats fishing around the Block Island Turbines.
You don’t need to be a rocket scientist to figure out the simple fact that if the platforms didn’t hold fish, no one would be fishing them – so the old wives-tail about they send out some sort of electrical field that scares the fish away is hogwash.
Don’t believe me? Take a look at this article authors by Dave Monte and read it for yourself: https://www.providencejournal.com/story/sports/2020/11/25/fishing-report-wind-farm-habitats-get-thumbs-up-anglers/6424082002/
Photo of a Trophy Size Blackfish Caught At The Block Island Wind Farm
Here’s another one:
I was on the phone with a friend out of Pt. Judith in early November talking about the Block Island Turbines, and he told me one of his commercial rod and reel fishing friends has been fishing the Block Island turbines this summer, easily catching his weekly limit of Bluefish.
The Wind Farms will be scattered up and down the east coast and will provide structure in hundreds of locations. This structure will provide food and shelter for who knows how many different forms of sea life.
The “For-Hire” and Recreational fishing industry generates Billions of Dollars of Revenue and support Tens of Thousands of Jobs and this important user group needs to be attracted so they can bring a new voice and help change the narrative!
In closing, I want to share one more thing:
Over the past 6 or more months, I have been posting and discussing the importance of getting the “For-Hire” and recreational fishing community behind Offshore Wind.
I’ve also been discussing the issue with a few fishing business owners up and down the eastern seaboard. We have come to the conclusion that it would be a good idea create an advocacy group for Offshore Wind.
The name of the group will be “Fishermen For Offshore Wind.” We own the domain, the website is being built and 501c3 paperwork is in the works.
“Fishermen For Offshore Wind.” Will Officially Launch on January 1, 2021.
“Fishermen For Offshore Wind” will bring Awareness, Education, Representation and Opportunity to the “For-Hire” and Recreational Fishing Stakeholder User Group.
If you would like to learn more and get involved, please reach out to me at your earliest convenience.