A wave monitoring device, aiming to explore the prospects of developing wave energy for the Republic of Mauritius and harness the potential of ocean energy, was deployed yesterday during a launching ceremony held at Le Batelage Restaurant, in Souillac.
This initiative follows the Collaborative Agreement signed in June 2015 by the Mauritius Research Council (MRC) with Carnegie Wave Energy Ltd on the prospects of developing wave energy for Mauritius. Based in Australia, Carnegie Wave Energy Ltd is a leader in wave energy technology and harnessing wave energy for the production of electricity and desalinated water.
Following the signature of the Agreement, Carnegie Wave Energy Ltd in partnership with the MRC began in November 2015 the project ‘High Penetration Renewable Energy Roadmap, Wave Resource Assessment and Wave-Integrated Micro grid Design in Mauritius’. The project is being jointly funded by Carnegie (19%) and the Australian Government (81%).
The Minister of Ocean Economy, Marine Resources, Fisheries, Shipping and Outer Islands, Mr Premdut Koonjoo, and the Minister of Civil Service and Administrative Reforms, Minister of Environment, Sustainable Development, and Disaster and Beach Management, and the Australian High Commissioner to Mauritius, Ms Susan Coles, were present at the deployment of the wave monitoring device at Souillac. The event was organised by the MRC in collaboration with the Australian High Commission in Mauritius.
Five potential locations that are no further than 3 km from Souillac have been identified for the deployment of the wave monitoring device. The aim is to use the site closest to Souillac for the deployment of the device.
It is recalled that the Republic of Mauritius has a total area of 2.3 million square kilometres of Exclusive Economic Zone and is geographically well positioned to harness ocean energy. This may be in the form of offshore wind, ocean wave, ocean current, ocean thermal and ocean saline energy.
Wave energy possesses unique characteristics that offer an advantage over other renewables such as wind and solar energy. These include:
- Less variable and with the variability being more gradual and with notice;
- More predictable: Wave energy is estimated to be at least three times more predictable than wind energy;
- The proximity of favourable wave energy sites to ultimate end users, thereby minimising transmission issues. Notably, approximately 60% of the world’s population lives within 60 kilometres of a coast.