Tidal Stream and Wave Energy Cost Reduction and Industrial Benefit

Tidal Stream and Wave Energy Cost Reduction and Industrial Benefit is a study conducted by Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult to assess the right government support for tidal stream and wave energy industries.  

A cost reduction pathway for tidal stream and wave energy

A Cost Reduction Monitoring Framework was implemented, and it showed that the costs of tidal stream have reduced considerably, considering the minimal deployment. It is projected that the costs may reduce further with economies of scale, learning by doing, maturing market and innovation. The levelised cost of energy (LCOE) will reduce from £300 per MWh to £90 per MWh by 1GW of deployment.

As for wave energy, the industry is still at an early stage and it is too early to analyse. However, it is considered to have great potential for both offshore wind and tidal supply chains.

Delivering carbon emission reduction with tidal and wave energy

Both tidal stream and wave energy are abundant resources with low operational emissions. By 2030, tidal energy could reduce emissions by over 1MtCO2. While by 2040, tidal energy could reduce over 4MtCO2 and wave energy over 1MtCO2.  

Seizing the global opportunity with world-leading technologies

The UK is currently a world leader in the development of marine energy technologies. Companies from Scotland, Wales and the South West, with offshore trajectory, have started to diversify their portfolios to tidal stream technology, which will propel tidal stream energy deployment, securing a significant share of global exports as well as within the UK market. In addition, this will generate more than 4000 jobs in coastal areas by 2030 and around 22 600 by 2040.

Wave energy implementation is still at an early stage. However, this abundant source of energy represents an interesting and promising industry. The lessons learned and the new innovations achieved by the offshore wind and tidal stream industry can play a huge role in accelerating the development of wave energy in the UK.

By Maria Paula Ar…