Date Awarded


Document Type

Capstone Project

Degree Name

Master of Arts (M.A.)


Virginia Institute of Marine Science


Andrew Scheld

Committee Member

Kate Wilke


The Biden Administration has set aggressive offshore wind energy goals, aiming to have 30 gigawatts of offshore energy in place by 2030. This amount of energy has the potential to power 10 million homes (White House, 2022), helping the administration to reach larger clean energy goals. In Virginia, Dominion Energy aims to have 2.6 gigawatts of offshore wind energy by 2026, enough to power up to 660,000 homes (Dominion Energy).

While the upcoming offshore wind energy development will create clean energy and green jobs, the ocean is no longer an open field for development and already supports a complex matrix of industries (Schupp et al., 2019). The number of competing uses for space is continually expanding, causing increases in conflicts between sectors (de Groot et al., 2014). From fisheries and offshore aquaculture to shipping channels and military use, the need for sustainably managed offshore development is greater now than ever before (Gill et al., 2020).

This research uses European stakeholder knowledge and experiences to highlight opportunities for conflict mitigation in the United States. Europe is about 20 years ahead of the United States in offshore wind development (Gill et al., 2020), and due to the diversity in regulatory statuses across countries (Schupp et al., 2019), a multitude of case studies exist for examining strategies to deal with competing ocean uses.



© The Author