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Ocean Panel calls for stronger R&D and demonstration programmes to accelerate ocean energy development

The High Level Panel for Sustainable Ocean Economy has published a new report ‘What Role for Ocean-Based Renewable Energy and Deep-Seabed Minerals in a Sustainable Future?’, examining the current status of ocean-based renewable energy and its potential and solutions in contributing to climate change action.

The report recognises that the current pace of decarbonisation is not rapid enough to reach the goals of the Paris Agreement and limit the global average temperature rise to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels. Renewable energy drawn from the oceans is needed to reach necessary emission reductions – and the development of those technologies must be accelerated to achieve a timely phase-out of fossil fuels, the report says.

As a solution, the report calls for stronger research, development and demonstration programmes to help ocean energy technologies reach maturity. Furthermore, scaling up should be accelerated with adequate financing, taxation and legal regimes that will stimulate investments. ETIP Ocean’s Powering Homes report is given as a reference to a set of actions that will support the sector’s ambition to deliver 100 GW of ocean energy in Europe by 2050.

The report also highlights the advantages that ocean energy has in comparison to other variable renewables: being highly predictable and producing typically at different times with other renewable resources are important in balancing a renewables-based electricity grid.

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