Advertisement

July 26, 2014

Department of Energy (DOE) Announces Funding for Hydrokinetic Power Projects

The Department of Energy (DOEannounced last week that it will commit $16 million toward 17 projects to capture energy from waves, tides and currents.  In a press release, DOE stated that the commitment is “part of the Obama Administration’s all-of-the-above strategy to deploy every available source of American energy.”  Although DOE’s committed funds are relatively modest, they may spur the growth of a largely untapped but potentially significant clean source of domestic power.

Wave and tidal, or hydrokinetic, energy, a renewable fuel source, may be captured where large volumes of water are moved (e.g., changing tides and currents).  According to DOE, development of this resource may supply clean and reliable power to millions of homes, including in many coastal U.S. cities with high power demands.  DOE’s latest assessments found that wave and tidal energy could potentially generate up to 1,400 terawatt hours (or 1.4 billion megawatt hours) annually.  (One terawatt hour would be sufficient to power 85,000 homes.)

A hint of government support for hydrokinetic energy production first arose in 2009, when the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) and the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) entered into a memorandum of understanding addressing their respective jurisdiction over hydrokinetic projects on the Outer Continental Shelf.  In January 2012, FERC issued its first pilot project license for a hydrokinetic project, which will generate power from the tidal flow of the East River in New York.  In August of this year, BOEM issued a Finding of No Significant Impact with respect to a proposed hydrokinetic power project off the Florida coast, giving the go-ahead for the first such BOEM-leased project.

DOE’s commitment consists of $13.5 million for eight projects to assist American companies with building wave and tidal devices to reduce production costs and maximize the harnessed energy.  These projects “will develop new drivetrain, generator and structural components as well as develop software that predicts ocean conditions and adjusts device settings accordingly to optimize power production,” according to DOE’s press release.  Additionally, DOE will provide $2.4 million to nine projects “that will gather and analyze environmental data from wave and tidal projects as well as potential development zones” to proactively handle environmental impacts and promote efficient development.

© 2014 McDermott Will & Emery

About the Author

Associate

Bethany K. Hatef* is an associate in the law firm of McDermott Will & Emery LLP and is based in the Firm’s Washington, D.C., office.  She focuses her practice on occupational safety and health law and environmental law. 

202-756-8474

Boost: AJAX core statistics

Legal Disclaimer

You are responsible for reading, understanding and agreeing to the National Law Review's (NLR’s) and the National Law Forum LLC's  Terms of Use and Privacy Policy before using the National Law Review website. The National Law Review is a free to use, no-log in database of legal and business articles. The content and links on www.NatLawReview.com are intended for general information purposes only. Any legal analysis, legislative updates or other content and links should not be construed as legal or professional advice or a substitute for such advice. No attorney-client or confidential relationship is formed by the transmission of information between you and the National Law Review website or any of the law firms, attorneys or other professionals or organizations who include content on the National Law Review website. If you require legal or professional advice, kindly contact an attorney or other suitable professional advisor.  

Some states have laws and ethical rules regarding solicitation and advertisement practices by attorneys and/or other professionals. The National Law Review is not a law firm nor is www.NatLawReview.com  intended to be  a referral service for attorneys and/or other professionals. The NLR does not wish, nor does it intend, to solicit the business of anyone or to refer anyone to an attorney or other professional.  NLR does not answer legal questions nor will we refer you to an attorney or other professional if you request such information from us. 

Under certain state laws the following statements may be required on this website and we have included them in order to be in full compliance with these rules. The choice of a lawyer or other professional is an important decision and should not be based solely upon advertisements. Attorney Advertising Notice: Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome. Statement in compliance with Texas Rules of Professional Conduct. Unless otherwise noted, attorneys are not certified by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization, nor can NLR attest to the accuracy of any notation of Legal Specialization or other Professional Credentials.

The National Law Review - National Law Forum LLC 4700 Gilbert Ave. Suite 47 #230 Western Springs, IL 60558  Telephone  (708) 357-3317 If you would ike to contact us via email please click here.