Clemson International Institute for Tourism Research & Development

Research Project

Survey of marine recreationists’ attitudes towards potential offshore wind energy in South Carolina

Principal Investigators: Dr. Jeff Hallo (PRTM, Clemson University), Matthew Brownlee (PRTM, Clemson University) & Laura W. Jodice (PRTM, Clemson University) 

Funding Source: SC Sea Grant Consortium - seed funding

Project Description: Feasibility studies of offshore wind resources in North Myrtle Beach and Georgetown are situated near growing tourism and recreation-dependent coastal communities. This project filled a gap in the current efforts by assessing impacts of offshore windpower on the potential economic and social behaviors of tourists, recreationists and other marine resource users in these areas. The assessment was designed to inform socio-economic impact assessment and marine spatial plans relevant to siting and size of windpower facilities and agency and industry outreach efforts within the region. A mixed-methods approach was used, including qualitative interviews with stakeholders - business, residents & tourists and a quantitative survey (marine recreationists & tourists in N. Myrtle Beach and Georgetown, SC) to identify the range of marine uses and attitudes and concerns regarding offshore windpower, particularly relevant to economic and social impacts.

Objectives: Assess attitudes and perceptions regarding support/opposition of offshore windpower among a broad diversity of stakeholders (visitors and residents that are beach goers and/or marine recreationists and coastal and marine dependent businesses) with interest in using marine waters where offshore windpower is being explored off North Myrtle Beach and Georgetown.

Results:

Brownlee, M.T.J., J.C. Hallo & L.W. Jodice. (2012). 2011 Survey of marine recreationists’ attitudes towards potential offshore wind energy in South Carolina. Final Report submitted to S.C. Sea Grant Consortium. [Final Report PDF]