His international collaboration on the production of marine roadmaps and research strategies includes Canada, the US, Chile and Mexico. He has also coordinated several European marine energy projects, including DTOcean, which developed design tools for arrays of wave and tidal devices.
Source: ©Orbital Marine Power Ltd.
The potential exists, worldwide, to develop 300 GW of wave and tidal current energy by 2050, according to forecasts by the International Energy Agency collaboration programme for Ocean Energy Systems (IEA OES). The benefits promise to be substantial, with the creation of 680 000 direct jobs, 500 million tonnes of carbon savings, and EUR 29.6 billion  investment in 2050.
To meet these forecasts, the sector needs to make significant progress through international collaboration and cooperation. There have been great strides forward in recent times, with several tidal projects achieving extensive operating hours, and multi-GWhs generated globally. Wave energy technology has also moved forward, with a number of successful large-scale laboratory and offshore tests. Complementing this progress, Wave Energy Scotland and the US Department of Energy (DoE) are leading international collaboration on the development of stage gate metrics for ocean energy, providing a robust and standardised approach to the management of innovation and technological progress.
Public and private investors around the world have continued to make significant investment. In 2018, the US Department of Energy announced funding of EUR 21.2 million  to support 12 next-generation marine energy technologies, along with enabling projects. In the UK, Orbital Marine Power concluded testing on their 2 MW turbine, and raised EUR 7.9 million  from 2 300 individual investors for a next generation device. Wave Energy Scotland selected two devices for real-sea testing in 2020, with funding of EUR 8.7 million .
'To assist sector development, OES is engaged in arrange of international collaborations across its 25 member countries'
At policy level, ocean energy is finding its place within a global energy market subject to considerable change. The drivers for renewable energy continue to strengthen, while declining prospects for nuclear energy in key ocean energy markets make headroom for low-carbon technologies. However, globally, ocean energy projects are still waiting for clear market signals, which are vital if the industry is to progress towards commercialisation.
'OES’s most recent task has been to develop a framework for international performance evaluation of ocean energy technologies'
To assist sector development, OES is engaged in a range of international collaborations across its 25 member countries. These include the Environmental Issues project led by the US DoE, which has developed a means for retiring the environmental risks that slow down consent processes and the development of marine energies. A new study led by Tecnalia in Spain monitors the evolution of ocean energy costs and assesses the impact of various drivers on the levelised cost of energy (LCOE), taking into account historical trends, future development and differences in technologies and countries.
OES also carries out tasks dedicated to modelling verification and validation: one for wave energy, led by Ramboll in Demark; and another for tidal energy, led by the Energy Research Institute at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore. These groups have been engaging with experts from international research institutions and the business sector, comparing results among different numerical codes. A group of member countries – Japan, India, China, Korea, France and the Netherlands – have been working together on Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion (OTEC), to assess its potential around the world and to discuss the status of existing and planned OTEC projects.
OES’s most recent task has been to develop a framework for international performance evaluation of ocean energy technologies. With strong inputs from the European Commission, the US DoE, and Wave Energy Scotland, it aims to produce a fully defined set of metrics and success thresholds for wave energy technologies, developing an internationally accepted approach.
In summary, there is clearly huge global potential in ocean energy, with significant benefits for carbon savings, security of supply, and jobs creation. The challenges might be robust, but by collaborating internationally, we can develop efficient and effective ways to accelerate the deployment of ocean energy technologies, and thereby reap substantial rewards.
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