With the controversy surrounding the big tidal turbine in the Bay of Fundy, perhaps we as a province should look into Ocean Wave Power. Waves are a clean and renewable sources of energy with an astonishing potential for generating electricity. Unlike solar and wind, which are only available about 50% of the time – ocean waves can be harnessed about 90% of the day. If properly funded, explored and exploited, the steady waves of the ocean could meet roughly half of the world’s power consumption demands.
So what is Wave Energy?
Wave energy, also known as ocean energy, is energy harnessed from ocean waves. The rigorous vertical motion of surface ocean waves contains a ton of kinetic energy that can be captured by a variety of wave energy technologies.
Wave power is power drawn from waves. When wind blows across the sea surface, it transfers the energy to the waves making them a very powerful source of energy. The energy output is measured by wave speed, wave height, wavelength and water density. The stronger the waves, the more capable they are for producing power. The captured energy can then be used for electricity generation, powering plants or pumping of water. There are many challenges in capturing this energy at present, which is why there are very few wave generation plants around the world.
When you look out at a beach and see waves crashing against the shore, you are witnessing wave energy. It’s not being harnessed or used for the benefit of anyone, but it is producing power. And many enterprising individuals would say it is just waiting to be used to make our energy consumption cleaner and cheaper. Wave energy is often mixed with tidal power, which is quite different.
What do you think about this new green energy source?
So do you think wave energy is right for us here in Nova Scotia? We’re surrounded on almost all sides by ocean, so it may be a viable option. Please let us know your thoughts on our social feeds on facebook and twitter today!