While world leaders meet in Paris to discuss reducing carbon emissions believed to contribute to climate change, the government of Gibraltar is putting its own renewable energy plan into action. The iconic British territory has inked a deal with Eco Wave Power to install a 5-megawatt wave energy power station to harvest electricity from the rising and falling waters of the Mediterranean.
We've been following Eco Wave Power over the past few years, as the Israel-based company has developed its small-scale float and buoy technology designed to convert the rise and fall of ocean swells into usable energy. The so-called Wind Clapper and Power Wing power generation system stood up to tests in the face of brutal Black Sea storms, setting the stage for the first commercial agreement to build a wave energy system in China.
Construction is now underway on grid-connected, 100-kilowatt Eco Wave power stations on Zoushan Island in the eastern Zhejiang province of China, as well as on Gibraltar's Ammunition Jetty.
For Gibraltar, the small station will then be expanded to a 5-megawatt power plant in a second phase of construction that will provide up to 15 percent of the territory's electricity needs and meet its renewable energy commitments to the European Union by 2020, according to Eco Wave Power.
If all goes well at the Chinese site, a second phase could be approved to expand that station to 50 megawatts.
Eco Wave Power also has reportedly received approval to build a 100-megawatt system off the coast of Kenya.