This report is a market overview about ocean energies and moving towards competitiveness.
The transition to a clean energy future requires our societies to diversify their energy mix and include a growing share of renewable energies. While we have experienced tremendous growth and cost reductions of solar and wind power in the last decade, we need to continue exploring all forms of renewables to secure the overall reliability and availability of renewables and ensure that they will meet the growing demand for electricity.
The world’s ocean have a sheer potential to provide for future energy needs. The kinetic, potential, chemical or thermal properties of seawater can be exploited by numerous technologies, producing energy from different phenomena occurring in the ocean : tidal range, tidal stream and ocean currents (referred to as tidal stream energy in this report), waves, thermal (OTEC) and salinity gradients.
This report also includes floating offshore wind turbines (FOWT) in its analysis. Ocean energies produce electricity without emitting greenhouse gases and from local resources well distributed around the globe and available in coastal areas near densely populated areas with high energy demand. Subsequently, ocean energies have the potential to support the transition towards a cleaner energy mix and greater energy independence, in particular for island communities.
In addition to their potential to contribute to macro policy goals, ocean energies have a number of advantages for local development. While other forms of renewables struggle with the issue of competing land use and acceptability, ocean energies can be installed in locations less sensitive to such concerns. Most forms of ocean energies are also reasonably forecastable and constant enough to provide a base load of electricity.