Pelamis wave machine in Portugal

The Pelamis wave farm has just been officially launched after a delay of more than a year. Pelamis takes its name from an ancient word for sea snake, as the machines could be described as giant metal snakes floating in the water. At full production they will be able to generate enough power for 1,500 homes, with 25 more machines set to be installed in Portugal.

“In addition to this flagship wave power, the Portuguese are investing heavily in other renewable technologies. They are already spending £250m on more than 2,500 solar photovoltaic panels to build the world’s largest solar farm near the small town of Moura in eastern Portugal. It will have twice the collecting area of London’s Hyde Park and supply 45MW of electricity each year, enough to power 30,000 homes. In the past three years, the country has also trebled its hydroelectric capacity and quadrupled its wind power sources – northern Portugal has the world’s biggest wind farm with more than 130 turbines and a factory that builds the 40m-long blades. Pinho wants Portugal to rival Denmark or Japan in its commitment to developing renewables industries – he predicts his country will generate 31% of all its primary energy from clean sources by 2020, compared with Britain’s target of 15%. The Portuguese target means increasing the generation of electricity from renewable sources from 42% in 2005 to 60% in 2020.”

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