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Wave Energy Power Facility 'a Commercial Success'

Thu 22th Sep 2011

The first commercial energy facility to utilise wave power was commissioned just 2 months ago, and is now successfully supply energy to around 600 residents in the town of Mutriku in the Basque Country.

Energy is produced by harnessing the power of the waves that bash into town's harbor walls. The operators, Ente Vasco de la Energía (EVE), dug 16 holes into the harbor's wall, which drives the power of the waves towards a number of turbines to create electricity.

Although this by no means new technology - and there are an estimated 60 similar projects currently in existence around the world - it is the first such project to have seen commercial success.

The 300-kilowatt plant creates enough electricity to meet 10% of the town's requirements and cost 7 million euros to build. Operators EVE now plan to use the technology to establish similar plants other locations along the coast.

The United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has estimated that wave energy has the potential to deliver up to 30% of the world's electricity in future years.

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