Wind and solar may be the leaders in Australia’s renewable energy race, but there’s another contender lurking in the country’s oceans as stated by The Conversation. Australia possesses the world’s largest wave energy shore at around 1,800 terawatt-hours. Most of this is concentrated in the southern half of the continent, between Brisbane and Geraldton. Waves are not the only renewable power sources in the country, the daily movements of the tides shift vast amounts of water around the Australian coast and the technology for converting tidal energy is more mature as compared to other wave converters. Ocean renewable energy also spans ocean thermal energy conversion and the energy from the ocean currents like the East Australian Current. These things represents less mature technologies with fewer opportunities in the country. Australia has vast energy resources, both renewable and traditional fossil fuels, so what does it take for Australia to fully consider wave energy? The Paris Agreement where Australia is a signatory, aims to limit global warming well below 2 C. This will need almost complete decarbonisation of global electricity systems by 2050. To keep the country on track meeting the international commitments, members of the country’s Climate Change Authority recently proposed a target of 65% by the year 2030. To reach this target, it would require a fast and a large-scale transition to alternative emission-free energy systems. As mentioned, wind and solar are leading the way, but the other alternative technologies are needed. It will not only boost low-emission energy supply, but will also solve the problem of intermittency due to the natural variability of the energy sources.
Interested in advertising on Solar Trust Centre? Enquire here.