OES reports on SE Asia insular ocean energy challenges

Illustration/Tidal platform deployed off Singapore (Photo: Envirotek)

 
Ocean Energy Systems (OES) has released a report on the workshop that explored the opportunities and barriers to local adoption of ocean renewable energy in islands and remote coastal areas in Southeast Asia.

The two-day workshop facilitated the discussions of the various stakeholders in the ocean renewable energy field, specifically those situated in islands or remote coastal areas of the region.

It also tackled the crucial roles academia, policy-makers, industry and end-users have to play to contribute to the uptake of ocean renewable energy in Southeast Asia.

One of the challenges for the region identified in the report from the workshop is the presence of local supply chain.

Also, a need to drive more awareness and education especially to policy makers and the end-users on the benefits and challenges of deploying ocean renewable energy was identified.

The workshop explored the presence of supportive policies for ocean energy sector development in the region.

“The stability of governance highly affects the consistency of policies. In this regard, the presence of policies supporting ocean renewable can be necessary to kick start few projects but they should be consistent in order to encourage more devices in the water.

“In addition, policies towards ocean renewables should also emphasize the need not only for stable energy source but also the economic benefits that the sector can create,” the report states.

In terms of technical solutions, there is consensus among the experts in the region that the suitable ocean energy device in the islands and remote coastal areas is small-scale and modular, according to the report.

Technology developers should consider the rigidity and resilience of these ocean energy systems as most of these islands are also situated in highly disaster vulnerable areas and as such, it is advised in the report.

The experts at the workshop highly encouraged the collation of best practices from the individual ocean energy projects in order to start the formation of standards of how one can develop ocean energy projects specifically catered to the local conditions of the region.

“Overall, there is a higher push from different stakeholders to look into ocean renewable energy as an alternative source of energy especially in islands. This positive outlook should be accompanied with concrete steps and actions items to work together to put more working ocean energy devices under water,” the report reads.

The workshop was organized by the Energy Research Institute @ Nanyang Technological University (ERI@N), together with the OES in collaboration with Ocean Pixel, Envirotek and ERI@N’s regional partner, the ASEAN Centre for Energy through the Southeast Asian Collaboration for Ocean Renewable Energy (SEACORE).

OES, also known as the Technology Collaboration Program on Ocean Energy Systems, is an intergovernmental collaboration between countries operating under a framework established by the International Energy Agency, with the aim to advance research, development and demonstration of conversion technologies that harness energy from all forms of ocean renewable resources.

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