Financing ocean energy farms
Many ocean energy technologies have reached a critical moment in their development: the demonstration phase, where pilot farms/plants are put in the water. This phase requires higher investments than RD&I prototypes, while retaining a number of uncertainties linked to their innovative and first-of-a-kind nature. Access to finance is therefore more challenging and the cost of finance is high – sometimes as much as the device and its installation together.
To bridge the “Valley of Death” of financing and avoid funding banks rather than technologies, public intervention is required. A few instruments already exist, and several are being discussed, created and adapted.
Funding research & innovation
Over the past 10 years, the European Commission has invested over €300m in ocean energy research, development and innovation (RD&I), through a multitude of funding programmes.
EU energy & climate policy
For over 20 years, the European Union has been developing climate and renewable energy policies. The cornerstone of these policies is setting targets for renewable energy generation across the EU.
Environment, planning & grid
Permitting and environmental validation can bring significant delays to any renewable energy projects if not planned carefully by developers. The legislation is also sometimes not adapted to new technologies, with requirements that can be crippling for prototype or demonstration projects.