US Department of Energy Launches $5 Million Fund to Boost Water Power Technologies

The US Department of Energy's Water Power Technologies Office (WPTO) has unveiled a $5 million fund aimed at accelerating the commercialization and adoption of water power systems and solutions, underscoring their role in achieving a clean sector by 2035.

Water power technologies, including and marine energy, are recognized for their potential to stabilize electricity grids due to the predictable nature of water flows. This stability complements intermittent renewable sources like wind and , which are subject to variability.

In a statement, the WPTO highlighted its commitment to fostering entrepreneurship and supporting business creation through this initiative. “The funds will enable into emerging marine energy and hydropower systems, promoting economic innovation through competition,” the office stated.

The funding will be disbursed in two phases: initially, up to $100,000 each will be awarded to eight projects lasting six to nine months. Subsequently, up to four projects will receive up to $1 million each for two to three years. Concept papers must be submitted by August 7, 2024, to qualify for consideration.

Earlier this year, the DOE allocated $6 million to two marine energy projects aimed at developing a tidal energy research, development, and demonstration pilot site. Orcas Power and Light Cooperative and ORPC were recipients of this investment, marking a strategic push towards advancing marine capabilities.

According to GlobalData, hydropower has contributed 8% of the US' total power generation in recent years, with large hydropower capacity showing gradual growth from 2010 to 2021.

In addition to this initiative, in February 2024, the DOE launched a $14.5 million funding opportunity to address challenges within the marine and ocean renewable energy sectors, further underscoring its commitment to sustainable energy development.


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