Consenting Processes for ocean Energy

This report summarises several aspects of the consenting process for ocean energy in the OES member countries.

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Administrative and regulatory issues concerning permitting of ocean energy projects in the sea are likely to be the highest non-technical barrier to overcome on the development towards large scale ocean energy implementation. The consenting process is regarded as a critical barrier for industry and to future progress of the sector.

Maritime Spatial Planning (MSP) and Strategic Environmental Assessment have been identified as tools which can support and inform future consenting of ocean energy projects. Some countries are in the process of developing MSP systems and others have already zoned sea areas for marine renewable energy development. The operation of consenting systems will always be influenced to a large extent by national governance structures, given ultimate authority rests primarily with them. Likewise dedicated policies, strategies and incentives for renewable energy introduced by respective governments can have a significant impact on progressing industry development.

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