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Major wave energy developer pulls plug on massive project off Reedsport

OPT wave energy device

OPT wave energy device

Ocean Power Technologies (OPT) has thrown in the towel on large wave energy devices off the Oregon Coast. OPT announced Monday that they’re pulling what’s left of their wave energy device from the ocean off Reedsport. With the move, there are no longer any wave energy devices permanently located off the Oregon Coast.

At the Newport City Council meeting Monday night, Oregon Coastal Zone Management Agency member and City Councilor David Allen said that it’s the end of an era where throwing devices into the sea without fully testing them first, is over.

Wave energy development firms have long claimed that unlocking the energy of the sea is at least a part of America’s future green energy mix. But no firm has yet produced a device that is capable of delivering on that promise. A big part of the financial allure for wave energy companies to get into the race to produce high electrical output devices has been due to huge federal subsidies for their projects. Apparently, qualifying for those subsidies has gotten more stringent.

In the meantime, Oregon State University’s Pacific Marine Energy Center, located in Newport, is working toward testing the latest prototype wave energy devices, something that OPT might have greatly benefited from before it took “the leap” on its own.

With that, here’s more details from Oregon OPB. Click here.

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