An Australia-based wave energy company has received governmental funding to proceed with building what would be the world’s first renewable energy island microgrid which would include wave energy, solar energy, and energy storage.
Perth-based wave energy developer Carnegie Wave Energy Limited announced this week that it had been awarded $2.5 million in support from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) to design and build the Garden Island Microgrid Project, the world’s first wave energy integrated microgrid which will also produce both power and desalinated water. The Project will also include a 2 MW solar PV system, and a 2 MW/0.5 MWh battery storage system. Together, the project will form a microgrid which will operate either independently or in cooperation with the Western Australian electricity network, being able to seamlessly switch between the two.
“The Garden Island Microgrid Project will be the first time anywhere in the world that wave energy will be combined with solar and batteries in a microgrid configuration,” said Dr Michael Ottaviano, Carnegie’s Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer. “The demonstration of this microgrid project will help drive the commercialisation of CETO and will be a model we will roll out to island nations around the world. We look forward to completing the outstanding elements of the Project including final approvals, construction award and power offtake in order to commence the Project, as soon as possible.”
The development of this project could have long-term implications well beyond Australia’s shores, as well.
“It will be the first time wave energy will be integrated into a microgrid, and if successful this diverse technology system could set a great new exportable opportunity for Australia to island nations around the globe,” said ARENA CEO Ivor Frischknecht. “With limited land available, wave energy generation supported by a reliable microgrid of battery storage and solar PV could be a better, cheaper, and more sustainable way to power remote coastal or island communities long-term, displacing their reliance on diesel fuel.”