Photo: Illustration (Courtesy of SIMEC Atlantis Energy)

Industry body outlines high deployment, low cost 2030 vision for ocean energy

A new publication by industry association Ocean Energy Europe has estimated that 3 GW of ocean energy could be deployed worldwide, with costs falling to around €90/MWh for tidal stream, and €110/MWh for wave energy by 2030.

Illustration (Courtesy of SIMEC Atlantis Energy)

The 2030 Ocean Energy Vision industry analysis paper, launched on 13 October, 2020, considers the roll-out of European tidal and wave technology over the coming decade.

The analysis projects deployments in high and low growth scenarios. It also examines how energy costs will reduce and supply chains grow, as more ocean energy is deployed.

According to the paper, over 90% of the world’s ocean energy could be installed in Europe over the next decade, reflecting the strong global position that Europe holds in ocean energy.

“The publication’s supply chain mapping clearly illustrates the industrial and social opportunity that ocean energy represents. Whether it’s cutting steel, designing gearboxes or installing machines in the open sea, wave and tidal farms will harness Europeans’ existing skills and help drive the economic recovery”, Ocean Energy Europe said.

Laying the groundwork for a new European renewable sector today is expected to deliver jobs, exports, industrial regeneration throughout the 2030s, and unlock full decarbonisation by 2050, according to the industry body.

The critical action for achieving these predictions, according to Ocean Energy Europe, is setting the ambitious targets for ocean energy in the forthcoming European Strategy for Offshore Renewable Energy.

Targets must be complemented by deeper cooperation between the EU and national governments, particularly on revenue support and permitting. Taken together, these policy actions will stimulate investment, get large-scale projects in the water and drive costs down further, Ocean Energy Europe said.

 “The 2030 Ocean Energy Vision is a clear signal of the industry’s confidence in the future. We know what Europe will need in 2030 and beyond, and we know that ocean energy delivers on those needs.

“The sector has already taken huge strides forward in technological development and cost reduction. Now we just need the right framework to roll out large-scale wave and tidal energy across Europe’s seas and oceans”, said Rémi Gruet, CEO of Ocean Energy Europe.

Charlina Vitcheva, Director-General for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries at the European Commission, added: “Ocean energy can be a real ‘jewel in the crown’ of the Blue Economy. The economic and environmental opportunities it offers EU coastal citizens are exactly what the European Green Deal is all about.

“The European Commission is busy preparing a new Strategy on Offshore Renewables as we speak, and I warmly welcome the ocean energy sector’s contribution to this work. This Strategy should be an important catalyst for the development of all offshore renewable energy, and for building a Europe powered by blue energy.”