Ocean of Energy



The Ultimate Renewable Energy Resource 


Although the only energy we think of when we are out sailing on Na’walak is the energy of the wind to propel us, the ocean can be a sizeable source of energy for civilizations’ needs into the future. Where will the globe’s energy supplies come from 50 years from now? 100 or 200 years from now? It might be right beneath us. There are several ways we can turn this great volume of water into power. Some are new, some are not so new.





Tidal energy is a form of renewable energy that is generated by harnessing the power of ocean tides. Tides are caused by the gravitational pull of the moon and the sun, and they cause the level of the ocean to rise and fall twice a day. Tidal energy can be harnessed by building barrages or dams across estuaries or bays that allow the ocean water to flow in and out of the reservoir, turning turbines and generating electricity.


There are two main types of tidal energy technologies: barrages and tidal turbines.


Barrages are long structures that are built across a bay or estuary. The barrage has gates that are opened during high tide, allowing water to flow into the reservoir behind the barrage. When the tide goes out, the gates are closed, and the water in the reservoir is trapped. The water is then released through turbines as the tide comes back in, generating electricity. Barrages can produce a large amount of electricity, but they can also have significant impacts on the surrounding ecosystem and water quality.


Tidal turbines, on the other hand, are similar to wind turbines, but they are designed to operate underwater. They capture the kinetic energy of the moving water and convert it into electricity. Tidal turbines can be placed in areas with high tidal currents, such as narrow straits or channels, and they can be deployed individually or in arrays. Tidal turbines have a lower environmental impact than barrages, but they are also less efficient at generating electricity.


Tidal energy has several advantages as a renewable energy source. Tides are predictable and reliable, and they are not affected by weather conditions or fluctuations in the wind. Tidal energy is also a clean source of energy, producing no greenhouse gas emissions or pollution. However, tidal energy is still a relatively new technology, and there are challenges to be addressed, such as the environmental impact of tidal barrages and the cost of tidal turbine installation and maintenance.