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EMB Working Group on Marine Renewable Energy Kicks Off

On 4 June 2021, the new EMB Working Group on Marine Renewable Energy met for the first time during the kick-off meeting held online. The meeting was chaired by Takvor Soukissian (HCMR, Greece) and Anne Marie O'Hagan (UCC, Ireland).

The new EMB working group on Marine Renewable Energy will build on the recommendations of the EMB Vision Document 2 on Marine Renewable Energy, published in 2010, to provide updated recommendations as we enter a new low carbon era. Marine sources of renewable energy are typically less mature and less well-established than those on land, although offshore wind could now be considered mature, but still represent an attractive area for growth. However they are of great importance in the scope of efforts to reduce carbon emissions, including within the EU Green Deal, which leads on from the 2015 Paris Agreement and which aims to have “net zero emissions of greenhouse gases by 2050”, and the EU Roadmap to Towards a New Blue Economy. Given the ever increasing and conflicting demands for marine space, particularly in Europe, there is also growing interest in multi-use of space, and the co-location of marine renewable energy installations with other activities. The potential ecological impacts of marine renewable energy projects, either in isolation or cumulative, have resulted in significant delays in the consenting of offshore wind farms. The ecological constraints to marine renewables targets as part of the ‘green recovery’ will become increasingly important considerations in the future as the pace of development accelerates. 

This working group will therefore work towards the publication of a Future Science Brief in 2022 which will seek to provide an update on status and recommendations related to this topic since the 2010 EMB Vision Document 2, to highlight the current knowledge and research gaps in marine science, including in relation to the impact of marine renewable energy systems on marine ecosystems, and to consider future implications as this sector continues to mature.

The members of this working group are:

Chair: Takvor Soukissian, HCMR, Greece
Co-Chair: Anne Marie O'Hagan, UCC, Ireland
Arianna Azzellino, Polytechnic University of Milan, Italy
Ferdinando Boero, University of Naples, Italy
Ana Brito e Melo, WavEC, Portugal
Patricia Comiskey, SEAI, Ireland
Zhen Gao, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Norway
Dickon Howell, Howell Marine Consulting, UK
Marc Le Boulluec, Ifremer, France
Christophe Maisondieu, Ifremer, France
Beth Scott, University of Aberdeen, UK
Elisabetta Tedeschi, NTNU, Norway and University of Trento, Italy

You can find out more about this working group here.