Energy Demands: Can Wave Energy Meet Our Needs?

New forms of energy are needed. Oregon has a “Renewable Portfolio Standard” that states that Oregon’s goal is for the state’s power supply to be comprised of 25% renewable energy for all large utilities (PGE, PacifiCorp, EWEB) and 10% and 5% renewable energy for small utilities by 2025. Compared to other renewables, wave energy has a higher energy density, a high availability (80-90%), and better predictability.

Wave device

While research is ongoing to determine how efficient wave energy devices can be, consider this: a wave energy buoy is rated in the same way as the light bulb. Developers can build a buoy that can generate 40 kilowatts (kW), or one that can generate 1 megawatt (MW). Columbia Power Technologies' point absorber is rated between 250 kW and 1MW. A 250 kW buoy could power 250 homes, on average.