This paper presents the current situation regarding the national policy for the development of ocean energy in Ireland. There are four Phases envisaged within this policy to encourage indigenous developers to progress commercial projects to prototype stage. The driving force behind the strategy is the large wave energy resource available at the Irish west coast compared with the electrical energy requirement of the country. The potential for commercial development is also recognized in this nascent industry where Irish developers are amongst the leading contenders worldwide.
The first Phase of this strategy has been implemented with the establishment of a Centre of Excellence for R&D. The intermediate scale test site has been established in Galway Bay and two devices have been deployed there. A tidal stream device has also been demonstrated.
The second Phase is currently being implemented with the establishment of the open sea test site where grid connected prototypes can be tested.