The European Commission under the EMFF has issued a new call to support the development of ocean energies in Europe. With a budget of 2.3 million euros, this call is expected for projects likely to environmental monitoring of ocean energy devices.
Developers’ application for consent requires a sound understanding of environmental assessment and processes applied to ocean energy. However, deployments of ocean energy devices are without precedent and there is limited empirical data that could inform the regulatory process. Obtaining consent for an emerging technology such as ocean energy can be time consuming and costly. This also entails the need for public information, consultation and support. Consenting processes, thus, need to be anticipated, tailored and proportionate.
Close environmental monitoring and impact assessment and an early understanding of these aspects will benefit the current and future deployments of the ocean energy sector as a whole, by putting in place a guiding framework within which to establish protocol for regulatory assessments, licensing, control and monitoring. This will help to steer the transition from research and development to commercial deployment of new technologies.
This is the second call for proposals in this area launched with support of the EMFF.
The general objectives of this call for proposals are:
- To increase the amount of environmental data and improve knowledge on assessing possible impacts of ocean energy devices (wave, tidal and ocean thermal energy conversion) deployed at sea;
- To contribute to reducing uncertainty in modelling potential impacts of future ocean energy devices;
- To provide guidance to ocean energy developers and to public competent authorities in charge of licencing and maritime planning ;
- To inform stakeholders and help feed the public debate
Projects under this action should achieve concrete outputs within the project duration. The proposal must clearly describe the specific outputs of the project in terms of:
- Improved environmental information on deployments of ocean energy devices at sea condition in test centres or commercial sites;
- Identified and covered gaps in knowledge in the area of consenting and licencing;
- Increased exchange of information on environmental status and possible impacts of ocean energy devices between EU Member States consenting authorities;
- Increased awareness of and education in environmental monitoring, control and maritime spatial planning;
- Increased public awareness, engagement and social acceptance of ocean energy projects;
- Development and integration of publicly available recommendations and tools (for decision makers, developers, stakeholders, etc.), which will be used to improve and streamline processes and reduce duplication of efforts;
- Facilitate the identification and selection of sites as well as future consenting;
- Integration/Updating environmental data platform aligned with relevant existing legislation and initiatives (e.g. EMODnet, Inspire Directive, Marine Strategy Framework Directive, Maritime Spatial Planning, etc.).
A list of relevant indicators (qualitative/quantitative) to measure the expected outputs and impacts of the project must be included in the proposal.
Key dates in the call for project
- 24 September 2019 - Opening of the call
- 15 January 2020 - Deadline of the call