Country Reports


SUPPORTING POLICIES FOR OCEAN ENERGY
 

NATIONAL STRATEGY
The NZ Government has a long-running commitment to a goal of 90% renewable electricity supply by 2025, with an additional target of 100% renewable electricity supply by 2035 being introduced in late 2017 by the new coalition Government. Following this, there is a target for a net zero emission economy by 2050.

In addition to these over-arching targets, the NZ Energy Efficiency and Conservation Strategy for 2017-2022 identifies the three priority areas of:

  • Renewable and efficient use of process heat
  • Efficient and low-emissions transport
  • Innovative and efficient use of electricity.

The first two of these priorities are likely to involve a shift in energy use towards electricity, thus effectively making the renewable electricity targets more stringent.


MARKET INCENTIVES
Market incentives for renewable electricity generation in NZ are relatively weak and are via the NZ Emissions Trading Scheme. This scheme requires all sectors of NZ’s economy to report on their emissions and, with the exception of biological emissions from agriculture, to purchase and surrender emissions units to the Government for those emissions.


PUBLIC FUNDING PROGRAMS
NZ has a number of Government funded R&D programmes, but none specifically targeting marine energy.

 

RESEARCH & DEVELOPMENT
Brett Beamsley of MetOcean Solutions was awarded funding from the Sustainable Seas National Science Challenge to develop a software tool for the prediction of the physical oceanographic effects of large scale tidal current generation. This project is in collaboration with Ross Vennell of the University of Otago and the Cawthron Institute, who has led projects in this area for a number of years.

(http://sustainableseaschallenge.co.nz/news-updates/6-new-innovation-fund-projects)

 


TECHNOLOGY DEMONSTRATION
 

OPERATIONAL PROJECTS
The US-based company NWEI, in partnership with NZ-based Energy Hydraulics (EHL) and others, concluded testing of the Azura Wave device at the US Navy’s Wave Energy Test Site at the Marine Corps Base Hawaii in late 2016/early 2017. During approximately 18 months of in-sea testing they were able to achieve 97% availability. This project is a continuation and evolution of the initial technology development known as WET-NZ.


PLANNED DEPLOYMENTS
Northwest Energy Innovations (NWEI) and their partners have developed a detailed design of a larger-scale Azura Wave device and are awaiting funding.