Brittany has officially solidified its backing for tidal turbine technology by becoming a member of Ocean Energy Europe, the world's largest network of ocean energy professionals. This move represents a significant milestone in acknowledging the region's contribution to the development of tidal energy in Europe, a sector that the French government has recently committed to supporting.
Ocean Energy Europe serves as a hub that brings together industry players, research institutions, and local authorities that are actively supporting the growth of ocean energy. Brittany's inclusion in this network highlights the region's dedication to advancing tidal turbine technology, with high-potential sites like Fromveur and optimal locations for small-scale tidal turbines.
Brittany's commitment to offshore renewable energy aligns with its energy transition goals. In 2016, the region established a roadmap for offshore wind and marine energies, aiming to install 500 megawatts of tidal power by 2030. This commitment has been further reinforced by the French government, which recently announced its support for the Flowatt tidal turbine pilot farm. These turbines have undergone testing and validation at the Paimpol-Bréhat test site in Brittany.
Brittany hosts two tidal turbine test sites: one in ria d'Etel for small-scale tidal turbines and another in Paimpol-Bréhat for grid-connected oceanic tidal turbines at a 1:1 scale. The Paimpol-Bréhat site is affiliated with the Open-C Foundation, an offshore renewable energy research infrastructure that coordinates sea trials and technological development. Various types of tidal turbines, including SABELLA, Nova Innovation, Guinard Energies SAS, and HYDROQUEST, have been immersed in Brittany to validate their technological choices.
Furthermore, Brittany boasts a network of companies with expertise to support tidal energy projects and collaborate with manufacturers in the sector. The region also hosts two well-equipped ports near the test sites: the Brest Port MRE Terminal and the Lorient Service Port, facilitating lower-cost operations for offshore renewable players.
Brittany's participation in the European TIGER project signals a commitment to updating studies on its promising tidal energy sites. These data will be shared with industries interested in harnessing these valuable resources.
Rémi Gruet, CEO of Ocean Energy Europe, expressed his satisfaction with Brittany's inclusion, saying, “We are extremely happy to welcome Brittany into the Ocean Energy Europe network. The region has long been home to projects and technological development, and its assets in terms of tidal resource, maritime infrastructure, and skills make it a clear go-to for developers. With Normandie and Pays de la Loire already on board, it is yet another clear message for the French Government that French Regions are powering ahead with ocean energy and that the technologies need some targets in the National Energy Strategy.”