Seabased is teaming up with Infocom Connect to provide clean, renewable, wave energy for commercial projects in the Canary Islands. The partnership will begin with a project for a pilot 5 MW installation to provide energy for a desalination plant, but could expand to address multiple energy needs, from automobile recharging stations to supplying the grid.
A group of autonomous islands off the coast of Spain, the Canary Islands rely heavily on diesel to fuel homes and businesses for the area’s two million residents, as well as roughly 15 million annual tourists. But one of the heaviest consumers of power is desalination plants. The islands have limited fresh water and must continually desalinate ocean water to maintain supply. Much of this is done with diesel, but the islands are working to replace fossil fuels with renewable energy. Óscar Sanchez, Executive Manager of SBH Hotels and Resorts company, which is one of the largest private companies in the Canaries, is behind the wave energy desalination project. Sanchez’ family also owns a desalination plant with a capacity of 5,000 cubic meters.
“I am deeply invested in the future of the Canary Islands and am excited about the potential of wave energy in this area,” Sanchez said. “We have slightly less than 3,000 square miles of land mass and it makes perfect sense to get our power from the waves. I see enormous potential of using wave energy not just for specific projects, like desalination, but ultimately to provide power for hotels and the grid itself, which should be less expensive than fossil fuels. There are many opportunities to fund these projects. We are moving quickly and I’m looking forward to seeing how this relationship can expand.”
Infocom Connect, a telecommunications company that operates largely in the Middle East, Africa, and India, is moving into the renewable energy industry. They have deep relationships in parts of the world that are ideal candidates for wave energy because of the wave climate and limited options for renewables.
“This project in the Canariesrepresents a great opportunity that could be replicated and scaled,” said Seabased CEO Øivind Magnussen. “We’re delighted to have a partner like Infocom Connect, because much of the early work of introducing the world to wave energy, such as site selection and permitting, happens through local relationships. Infocom has those relationships, and a strong reputation in the communities it serves. Our partnership will benefit not only our two companies, but the parts of the world where we can work together.”
Infocom Connect Managing Director John Crawford expressed similar enthusiasm. “We were looking for renewable energy companies that could serve very specific markets,” he said. “Wave energy is ideal for many of these markets and Seabased is a leader in this emerging industry. They have an impressive technology and track record. I look forward to many more joint projects in the future.”