The TIGER project is developing a cross Channel supply chain cluster. This will include, production of a UK and French marine energy supply chain directory with the aim of it becoming the go-to pan European marine energy directory, and the formation of a cross Channel Marine Energy Council focussed on leveraging support for marine energy from respective Governments.
The International Energy Association predict that the ocean energy industry will be worth £76 billion by 2050.
According to Ocean Energy Europe, wave and tidal stream energy can deliver 100 GW of capacity by 2050 – equivalent to 10% of Europe’s electricity consumption today. With almost 45% of Europe’s citizens living in coastal regions, ocean energy can be readily delivered where it is needed.
Wave and tidal stream energy will deliver economic recovery as well as decarbonisation. The European Commission estimates that ocean energy can contribute up to a cumulative €5.8bn in Gross Value Added between now and 2031. Economic activity will take place across the continent – from industrial powerhouses with underused supply chains to coastal regions with expertise in offshore operations and shipbuilding.
Ocean energy has a very low visual impact, preserving the aesthetic and therefore visitor economy value of coastal environments. It also has a very limited environmental impact and in some cases can create new habitats or foraging areas for marine species. Ocean energy will play an important role in balancing Europe’s electricity grid, which will require high levels of variable renewable power. Regulated by the moon, tidal stream is 100% predictable. The time between tides is so short that even a small amount of energy storage capacity can deliver non-stop power. When combined, wind and tidal stream together produce an overall power output that is constant, and reliable. To find out more about the technology behind tidal stream energy, please see our tidal facts section.
European companies lead the world in ocean energy. The world’s first and largest offshore tidal stream arrays are located in Europe, as is the world’s largest turbine. Europe has a significant opportunity therefore to consolidate this lead and dominate a new, high-value global market.
It is predicted that ocean energy can create 400,000 jobs by 2050. Many of these jobs will create rare opportunities for high value employment to revitalise coastal communities that historically served shipbuilding, fishing, and the oil and gas sector.
There are a number of useful market reports that have been produced with further information: