MRE market set to make great strides
The Marine Renewable Energy (MRE) market should see consistent development and growth over the coming decades, with the potential to produce 101 GW from tidal sources and 236 GW from wave by 2050. A commercial tidal array and river tidal farm are already operational in the UK and France. Last year, Ghana became the site of the first tender for a 100MW commercial wave power plant.
A major development factor will be the industry’s ability to achieve cost reduction, thus moving to commercial and utility-scale arrays. According to a May 2018 ORE Catapult study, the levelized cost of energy (LCOE) for tidal energy in Europe could drop from €170 per MWh by 100MW installed to €100 per MWh by 1GW and €90 per MWh by 2GW. Key investor nations at the forefront of this growth include Australia, Canada, Chile, China, France, Indonesia, Japan, Netherlands, Portugal, South Korea, the UK and the US. Many more countries have already established national policies or are on their way to adopting new laws favorable toward MRE development.
Today MRE technologies lack of addressable market, and remote populated areas remain the key target. But by continuing to innovate and expand supply chain and improving the environmental knowledge base, more markets will open up. At this stage, research and innovation are keys to increasing the readiness level of these technologies as the march toward commercialization continues. Bureau Veritas Marine & Offshore plays an active role in many MRE projects, helping minimize risk in innovative design solutions for energy capture, power conversion or mooring -challenges that the industry is addressing.