Barbados targets ocean potential

The government of Barbados has opened a tender for consulting services for a wide range of technical studies related to the build-out of large-scale ocean thermal energy conversion (OTEC) and offshore wind projects.

Illustration (Photo: Pixabay/Creative Commons CC0)

The Ministry of Energy and Water Resources plans to undertake a number of technical and environmental studies, as well as related capacity building activities, to investigate the feasibility and facilitate the construction of a large-scale ocean energy power plant or array in Barbados.

The government of Barbados is considering sourcing clean energy through OTEC and offshore wind technologies – both with fixed and floating foundations, according to the tender for consulting services, running until July 25, 2018.

Inviting the eligible consulting firms to indicate their interest in providing the services, the Ministry of Energy said the studies to be undertaken as part of the initiative, include – but are not limited to – the OTEC Techno Economic Study, where technical and financial related outputs for a power output closed-loop OTEC plant will be analyzed, and a similar study, but for offshore wind technologies.

Two other studies mentioned in the tender include the Environmental, Licensing and Tourism Study – where outputs related to consenting and licensing processes as well as tourism impact will be assessed, and Enabling Environment Study and Workshop that will analyze the local environment in Barbados for both OTEC and offshore wind.

OTEC is a form of clean technology that extracts energy from the temperature difference between warm surface ocean water and cold deep seawater.

The technology could prove fit for Barbados, the island country located in the Caribbean region of North America, as OTEC projects are most suitable for development in the equatorial waters.

The studies are financed through the Public Sector Smart Energy project, supported by Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and the European Union (EU).

The general objective of the program is to promote the use of renewable energy and energy efficiency measures in the public sector to reduce Barbados’ fossil fuel dependence and promote sustainable energy.