18 August 2014
Australia is becoming a major global developer of wave energy with two new projects sharing almost $10 million in Emerging Renewables Program funding.
Minister for Resources and Energy, Martin Ferguson AM MP, today announced a $5.6 million grant for BioPower Systems Limited’s $15 million bioWAVE Ocean Pilot off the coast of Victoria and just under $4 million to Oceanlinx Limited’s $7.2 million Commercial Wave Energy Demonstrator off the coast of South Australia.
“Including a grant for Carnegie Wave Energy, the Australian Government has now contributed close to $20 million to new wave energy technologies through the $126 million Emerging Renewables Program,” Minister Ferguson said.
“This makes us one of the world’s largest supporters of wave energy with a diverse range of technologies in development.
“Wave energy is still very much an emerging technology and this funding will position Australia as a global leader in developing this technology.
“Australia’s wave energy resources are considered to be among the best in the world, with the area between Geraldton in Western Australian and the southern tip of Tasmania able to provide more than 1300 terawatt hours per year, or about five times Australia’s total electricity requirements.
“With a price on carbon, and the commencement of the $3.2 billion Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA), the Australian Government is building confidence in the long term potential of clean energy technologies such as wave energy.”
BioPower’s bioWAVE unit is designed to survive the severe forces of the Southern Ocean while generating up to 250-kilowatt of electricity transported to the grid via subsea cable. Following assembly of the 400-tonne unit in 2013, the pilot is scheduled to operate to late 2015. The project has also received $5 million funding from the Victorian Government.
Oceanlinx’s 1-megawatt capacity GreenWAVE is a shallow water technology with no underwater moving parts. It employs Australian-designed oscillating water column, turbine and conversion components and will be connected to the grid by subsea cable from late 2013.
“The Emerging Renewables Program will continue under ARENA and will provide key support to the development of wave and other renewable energy technologies,” Minister Ferguson said.