Print 32 comment(s) - last by DontUhatePants.. on Jan 7 at 1:58 AM

Ocean Power Technologies, whose power-generating test buoy is pictured here, has been forced to deploy its technology in New Zealand and Australia, due to an ocean power licensing bureaucratic mess here in the U.S.  (Source: Ocean Power Technologies)
Political bickering may hold up plans to deploy and test new wave power technologies to the U.S.

When it comes to alternative energy, President-elect Barack Obama and his team, as in other tech fields, is stating that the time for change is now.  As part of his team's program, which encompasses wind, solar, and examining clean nuclear options, the team is turning its sights to ocean power.

Countries like Britain and Portugal have already jumped on exploiting the vast amount of energy in the ocean.  Powered by the gravitational pull of the moon, the Earth's tides carry a vast amount of energy, almost entirely untapped by current generators.  While the challenge of deploying a device out at sea that can withstand the elements and deliver power to the main land is considerable, many companies have already tackled the problem with innovative designs.

According to New York-based Environmental Defense Fund, a non-profit environmental advocacy organization, U.S. ocean power efforts, on the other hand, are stuck in a political mire.  The group met with President-elect Obama and his advisors to help them realize the nature of this problem.

In the U.S., two branches of government have been granted conflicting jurisdiction over the seas:  the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and the Minerals Management Service, part of the Department of the Interior.  The result has been a squabble over who's in charge of approving projects which has been unable to be resolved thus far.

The Minerals Management Service gained the power to issue licenses to alternative energy projects on the outer continental shelf, 3 to 200 miles off shore, with the Energy Policy Act of 2005.  That law, however, failed to eliminate the preexisting licensing authority granted to FERC.  Now both organizations claim they have the right to issue the license.

Thus far, both organizations have been unable to resolve the territory battle.  What has resulted is that funding for U.S. ocean-based alternative energy projects has dried up due to uncertainty about licensing.

The coalition pleading their case before President-elect Obama was composed of officials from local governments, utilities, environmental groups and ocean power companies, including Pennington, N.J.-based Ocean Power Technologies (OPTT).

If something is not done to clean up the mess, these groups say, the U.S. will lose its alternative energy lead to foreign competitors. Ocean Power Technologies is illustrating this as it is currently pulling some of its U.S. projects and has recently announced major projects in Australia and New Zealand.

The problem is among the toughest challenges to face the transition team, led by incoming Energy Secretary Steven Chu, currently a Professor of Physics and Molecular and Cellular Biology of University of California, Berkeley.

Comments     Threshold

This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled

RE: Question regarding ocean power.
By garbageacc3 on 12/27/2008 7:03:07 PM , Rating: -1
are you fucking retarded?

i purposely spelled it wrong...

fucking dumbass ADHD americunts can't even read a single sentence.

no wonder you're all so goddamn stupid.

"If you knew anything you would also know that the magnitude of the waves changes the mass density of the Earth which affects the resultant gravitational pull between the Earth and the Moon."



the moon's gravity affects the waves, not the other fucking way around.

what do you think would have more gravitational effect. the fucking mass of the moon, or just the fucking mass of the ocean?


can't you americunts think?

oh yea, gravity is relative. they pull on each other, but since the gravity of the moon affects the oceans more than the other way around, it is the moon's gravity that affects the waves.

magnitude of waves? WTF IS THAT?!?!

waves are defined in amplitude and frequency you dumb shit.

no shit the density of earth is not even, the earth isn't even fucking perfectly round.

thanks for the info captain dumbass

By Terberculosis on 12/28/2008 11:44:29 AM , Rating: 2
"the moon's gravity affects the waves, not the other fucking way around."

ummm... last time I checked, gravitational force in a non relativistic seting was still given by F=(GMM)/(RR).. Those two Ms in there mean that both objects act on each other.

Unfortunately, that isn't where your argument is broken. The reason the moon is sliding slowly away from the earth has to do with the fact that the moon is slightly leading the tidal bulges as they race aroud the planet. It's been going on for billions of years.

Now, the OP asked if this wave power would change any thing. It will. Adding these wave power machines out in the water changes the dispersion relation of the wave. Not by all that much, but by enough to change things. This means the tidal bulge will travel the teensy eentsyist bit slower. Meaning the moon will receive just the weenciest bit more pull backwards. , and the earth will therefore receive a bit of a pull forwards. The whole process will accelerate the transfer of momentum from the moon to the earth.

Sorry, no free lunch.

"Let's face it, we're not changing the world. We're building a product that helps people buy more crap - and watch porn." -- Seagate CEO Bill Watkins

Copyright 2016 DailyTech LLC. - RSS Feed | Advertise | About Us | Ethics | FAQ | Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information | Kristopher Kubicki