Skip to main content

U.S. Coast Guard, BSEE and BOEM Sign Agreement to Advance Safe and Environmentally Sustainable Energy Development

Monday, April 1, 2024

WASHINGTON — To strengthen interagency cooperation in the advancement of safe and environmentally sustainable non-mineral (renewable) energy development, including offshore wind, on the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS), the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) today with two Department of the Interior bureaus: the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) and the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM). U.S. Coast Guard Deputy Commandant for Operations Vice Admiral Peter Gautier, BSEE Director Kevin Sligh and BOEM Deputy Director Dr. Walter Cruickshank signed the MOU during a ceremony at the USCG Headquarters in Washington, D.C. 

The new agreement strengthens federal collaboration in support of the Biden-Harris administration’s priority to deploy clean energy to combat the global climate crisis. USCG, BSEE and BOEM share responsibilities for the planning, siting, construction, operation, maintenance and decommissioning of federal offshore non-mineral energy facilities. The memorandum will serve as a guide for coordination of respective roles for offshore safety and environmental protection in federal waters, and outlines agency leadership for specific oversight functions. 

“I’m signing this historic MOU today to memorialize the partnership between the Coast Guard, BSEE, and BOEM. Our cooperation is vital to be prepared for the rapid growth in offshore activity supporting sustainable energy development. Together we will ensure that this activity will be safe, secure, and environmentally sound,” said Admiral Gautier

“BSEE is committed to high standards for worker safety and environmental compliance during all offshore energy activities,” said BSEE Director Sligh. “The agreement signed today strengthens interagency communication and coordination, reduces gaps and redundancies in federal oversight, and helps us to leverage resources and expertise, all in the service of a mutual mission to provide for the safe and environmentally conscientious development of offshore renewable energy resources.” 

"Government partnerships are essential for ensuring offshore renewable energy development is done efficiently and responsibly,” said BOEM Director Elizabeth Klein. “The agreement signed today focuses on enhancing interagency communication and coordination and leveraging institutional knowledge. Our agencies’ collective efforts can provide additional impetus to the advancement of offshore wind energy development for the benefit of all Americans.” 

The MOU calls for USCG, BSEE and BOEM to: 

  • Coordinate on regulatory and policy development to promote consistency of regulations and policies where shared responsibilities exist. 

  • Strengthen communication and cooperation through information sharing, collaboration, synchronizing of information, and adoption of similar terminology, codes and standards, for clarity and consistency. 

  • Exchange services and personnel to support mutual work objectives when possible, allowing the agencies to leverage resources and expertise. The MOU does not obligate funds or staffing.

  • Develop and implement additional Memoranda of Agreement under the MOU to provide specific guidance on each agency’s role and shared responsibilities for regulating various OCS activities and facilities. 

The MOU signed today replaces a previous agreement signed in 2011 by the USCG and the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement, the predecessor agency to BOEM and BSEE. 

The mission of the USCG on the Outer Continental Shelf is to ensure maritime safety, security, and environmental protection.

The mission of BSEE is to promote safety, protect the environment, and conserve resources offshore through vigorous regulatory oversight and enforcement of ocean energy, marine mineral, and carbon sequestration activities on the OCS. 

The mission of BOEM is to manage development of U.S. Outer Continental Shelf energy, mineral, and geological resources in an environmentally and economically responsible way.

To address the climate challenges now and into the future, USCG, BSEE and BOEM support the Biden-Harris administration’s goals to deploy 30 gigawatts of offshore wind energy capacity by 2030 and 15 gigawatts of floating offshore wind energy capacity by 2035.

Contact Information