Assessment of Opportunities for Alternative Uses of Hydrocarbon Infrastructure in the Gulf of Mexico

Mark Kaiser and Allan Pulsipher. Funded by the U.S. Department of the Interior, Minerals Management Service, and the LSU Coastal Marine Institute. Project Funding: $185,527.

This project is to examine four (4) alternative uses of offshore structures in the Gulf of Mexico Region: artificial reefs, wind power, mariculture, and geologic sequestration/enhanced recovery. It will also consolidate, review, and synthesize the economic, environmental, political, technical, socioeconomic, and regulatory issues that frame each alternative. More specifically, the study will include the following tasks: (1) the legal framework governing the development and regulation of alternative OCS projects will be reviewed, (2) the Louisiana and Texas Artificial Reef Programs will be reviewed, (3) a literature review of offshore wind, mariculture, and geologic sequestration will be conducted and synthesized, (4) the challenges, opportunities, and risks of deployment of each alternative will be described and evaluated, and (5) business and general cost-benefit models will be developed for each alternative to illustrate the decision and economic processes involved.

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