A Risk Assessment Framework to Evaluate Effects of Offshore Wind Farms on the California Upwelling Ecosystem
This project will determine potential changes in coastal upwelling due to offshore wind project development.
The agreement was approved at the April 2020 business meeting and kicked-off in the summer. The first TAC meeting was held in September. The research team is coordinating closely with the team from EPC-19-011 to use a common set of parameters for offshore wind turbines and wind facility locations and configurations with industry guidance.
The project team is conducting a numerical modeling study to determine potential changes in coastal upwelling due to offshore wind project development over a variety of environmental conditions. A number of baseline cases (no wind farms) will be modeled for a variety of climatologies and compared with modeled cases that include simulated offshore wind farms with varying characteristics in identified areas of interest. The methodology will combine coupled numerical atmospheric-ocean models. Results from the coupled models will provide an enhanced scientific understanding of the effects of wind energy reduction on nearshore ocean circulation.
The agreement will identify the level of risk from floating offshore wind development on atmospheric and oceanographic circulation and the resulting effect on upwelling off the California coast. Upwelling is an essential process
Key Project Members
Sandia National Laboratories
The Regents of the University of California, Santa Cruz
University of California, Santa Cruz
Integral Consulting Inc.