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European nations back ocean energy

24 Nov 11 - Neil Davidson, Public Affairs Manager

Oyster 800 wave energy converter installation, European Marine Energy Centre, Orkney

'Member State position paper' hardly trips off the tongue as a major step forward for the wave and tidal industry.

But the formal announcement today of an agreed position paper on ocean energy, supported by Belgium, Denmark, Norway, France, Ireland, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain and the UK, shows that the potential of marine energy is fast moving up the European energy agenda.

The paper "Towards European industrial leadership in Ocean Energy in 2020" highlights the potential of ocean energy to satisfy 15 per cent of EU energy demand and create 314,000 new jobs across Europe by 2050, and calls on the European Commission to fully recognise this potential by including the sector in the EU's Strategic Energy Technology (SET) plan.

It also has the full support of - no surprise - the Scottish Government, the British-Irish Council and the European Ocean Energy Association.

Unlocking new sources of finance

SET plan inclusion is an important goal. It would recognise the potential for ocean energy to make a contribution to Europe's carbon reduction goals - and would unlock significant new funding to support the sector's growth.

The launch took place today to coincide with the Energy Council in Brussels. This high profile event brings together the European Commission and energy ministers from across the EU including ministers Fergus Ewing MSP, Charles Hendry MP and Pat Rabbitte TD, representing Scotland, UK and Ireland.

There is no better time to highlight the potential of ocean energy, and we hope European policy makers continue to take note.

Read the postion paper published by DECC.

 
 
 

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