Marine Renewables News Round-Up

Here’s a quick round up of some recent developments and interesting news items from the past two weeks:

The Scottish Saltire Prize – the largest single innovation prize for marine renewables –  which I posted about a year ago continues to attract international attention.   According to this story, 100 entities from 23 different countries worldwide have submitted entries to compete for the $20 million (USD) prize.

A new study will evaluate the potential for wave, tidal-stream and tidal technologies around the English and Welsh coastlines, says this Press Release.  In the meantime, there’s some disagreement over when marine renewables technologies will achieve full blown commercialization.  According to the Irish Times, a recently published report forecast that “wave energy would not develop in Ireland for at least a decade,” though these findings were disputed by  John McCarthy, Chief Executive of Ocean Energy, LTD.  Martin McAdam, CEO of Aquamarine Power is equally optimistic, telling Reuters that “What we feel is we can offer a device in future that will be competitive with offshore wind energy. By 2014 we will have a commercially available device.”

There’s progress in the U.S. as well.  Mike Rafterty of Stevens Institute in New Jersey reports progress on the Wave Energy Harnessing Device (WEHD), a system of submerged platforms and buoys will utilize a wave’s motion to create electricity.  And over in Maine, a collaboration between the University of Maine, Maine Maritime Academy and Portland-based Ocean Renewable Power Co. has landed nearly $1 million in grant money from the federal government to research and develop tidal power according to this Release.

Finally, an April 30, 2009 article by industry thought leaders Roger Bedard, Mirko Previsic and Brian Polagye, up at Renewable Energy Access gives a good overview on how much marine energy is available for development in the United States.