PROJECTS

Port Macdonnell, South Australia

Worlds First 1MW Wave Energy Converter

Projects / Questions and answers

 


 

 

In July 2012Oceanlinx received just under $4 million dollars in funding from the Emerging Renewables Program (ERP). This $126 million Program is administered by the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) to support the development of renewable energy technologies in Australia across the innovation chain. One of the key aims of the ERP funding is to help such companies advance to commercialisation. The federal funding awarded to Oceanlinx will help to demonstrate a commercial scale greenWAVE device in waters off the south east coast of  South Australia.

The South Australia Project has a term of 2 years and installation and grid connection is expected to take place toward the end of 2013. Previous project development work has identified a suitable site at Port MacDonnell where the wave resource is one of the best along the southern margin. The local region has a population of just over 1,000. Port MacDonnell is one of the busiest fishing harbours along the Limestone Coast and contributes significantly to the rock lobster industry of South Australia which has an annual commercial catch in the region of 2500 tonnes and export revenue in the order of $110 million per year.

Oceanlinx have developed a consultation process, third party verified to follow best practice, which has been engaging local stakeholders in the Project since late 2010. Oceanlinx representatives first addressed the local council, District Council of Grant, in October 2011, and will do so again in the near future. The first public meeting was held in Port MacDonnell on 2nd August 2012 where the project was presented and issues and concerns were addressed by Oceanlinx CEO Ali Baghaei and Project Analyst, Sean Barrett. Support for the project was measured at 64% with the remainder undecided and no objections were recorded. Click here to see a list of the questions that were addressed during the consultation process.

The south east region of South Australia is currently undergoing a period of transition from the traditional employment opportunities of forestry and fishing. This Project has the potential to instigate the creation of a new industry, an industry which has been identified by Acil Tasman as having the potential to be the second largest renewable energy employer in Australia. Studies have shown that there would be 6 permanent jobs created per installed MW of wave energy, and with the resource that is available off the South Australian coast, the region has the opportunity to become a centre of excellence in ocean energy technology.

Oceanlinx prides itself on focusing on local employment and the major companies involved in the project are all based in South Australia. Oceanlinx have also been pro-active in its consultation efforts, which has garnered a corresponding support from stakeholders, and especially the fishing community.

 

 


Port MacDonnell Coast

 


Google image highlighting location of greenWAVE device

 


The design of the greenWAVE ensures there is no conflict with fishing activities in the area, such as the imposition of exclusion zones, which would further reduce the available fishing area. It is expected that the Project will have very low impact on the environment in the region and 12 months of this project are dedicated to the operation and monitoring of this device to understand and quantify the impacts, if any on the local environment and community as a whole.

Oceanlinx are currently in the process of gaining consents for this project and manufacture of the main items will begin at the start of 2013. Updates on the Project will be available on this website and via the newsletter. Subscribe to the mailing list at the bottom of the page if you wish to know more about the project or want to keep up to date with events.