The summit marks the start of the two day Ocean Energy Europe Conference & Exhibition. The event takes place at a pivotal juncture for Europe’s ocean energy industry, as it prepares for take-off deployments in 2016.
With leading companies, world class research facilities and great offshore resources, Ireland has emerged as a global leader in ocean energy in recent years. After Edinburgh and Paris, bringing the industry to Dublin for this year’s Ocean Energy Europe Conference & Exhibition made perfect sense.
At the conference, European Commissioner for Fisheries and Maritime Affairs, Karmenu Vella, will convene a high level session of the Ocean Energy Forum to discuss the first conclusions of the Forum’s Strategic Roadmap. The Roadmap sets out the industry’s six-point plan for bring ocean energy technologies to the marketplace.
The action plan provides concrete proposals for public-private cooperation which would turn Europe’s technology leadership into a new industrial sector, providing growth and jobs for Europe. The industry looks forward to working with decision-makers to deliver on this plan.
''Ocean energy could meet 10% of the EU's power demand by 2050. This is a huge opportunity for the EU which currently imports more than half of its energy needs, with an annual price tag of 400 billion euros. Making ocean energy a success will mean more business opportunities and more high-skilled jobs especially in coastal areas, and for companies that can use their existing knowledge in naval construction, offshore activities, or experience in hydro equipment manufacturing to move into ocean energy. With 45% of wave energy companies and 50% of tidal energy companies worldwide coming from the EU, we have a good chance to maintain leadership in a growing global market.
It is in all our interests to accelerate the development of ocean energy. We are all aware of the enormous potential of the ocean energy sector. Not only in terms of contributing to reductions in greenhouse gas emissions but also in reducing our dependence on fossil fuels. Equally importantly, I believe there is significant potential to deliver green growth and jobs to the economy. I welcome the work that has been done to produce the draft Roadmap and I wish all the various interests well in finalising the Roadmap over the next 12 months.