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Finance Policy Socio-economic Research report

OES report: Ocean energy in islands and remote coastal areas

By Henry Jeffrey & Mr Benjamin Lehner

A report from OES ‘Ocean energy in islands and remote coastal areas’ explores the opportunities and challenges of ocean energy deployment in these regions.

The energy needs of islands and remote areas are often met with fossil fuel generation or via submarine cables from the mainland, meaning high and volatile prices, pollution and uncertain security of supply. Ocean energy can be an appealing solution for these regions: the resource is often abundant, the visual and environmental impact are very low, and the production is highly predictable.

According to the report, providing more information and including the local community in the decision-making could help raise awareness and increase support for ocean energy. Sector-specific policies covering international law, environmental impacts and the marine space would enable the development of the ocean energy sector. Including ocean energy in the marine spatial plans would facilitate consenting for both project developers and regulatory authorities. In addition, feed-in tariffs and risk-reducing business models would improve the profitability of ocean energy projects in these markets.

The report points out that ocean energy can also be developed together with other applications that can be specifically interesting for islands and remote coastal areas. These include desalination, aquaculture, hydrogen production and coastal defence.

This is an extract, full report available as PDF download

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