30 June 2014 — BRIEF: The Australian Renewable Energy Agency has announced $11 million in funding to support the next stage of Carnegie Wave Energy’s energy production and desalination technology.

ARENA CEO Ivor Frischknecht said the funding would help Carnegie progress towards commercialisation of its groundbreaking CETO technology.

“The $46 million CETO 6 project represents the next generation of Carnegie’s landmark wave technology and is expected to deliver energy at approximately half the cost of CETO 5,” Mr Frischknecht said.

“CETO 6 also allows for offshore power generation, which could enable additional applications for the technology operating further from shore, in deep water.”

The CETO units, large buoys tethered to the ocean floor that harness wave energy, have a capacity of one megawatt – four times that of the previous model.

“This increased generation capacity, combined with improved efficiency, delivers reduced power costs and brings the technology closer to commercialisation,” Mr Frischknecht said.

He said that as the technology matured, the need for government assistance diminished.

“ARENA is pleased to support this Australian-owned and globally deployed technology, which is yet to fully realise its job creation and export potential.”

The project will deploy three CETO 6 units off the coast of Garden Island in Western Australia. The project will have a capacity of 3MWand will go towards powering the HMAS Stirling Navy base, as part of Carnegie’s existing power supply agreement.

In addition to funding received through ARENA’s Emerging Renewables Program, Carnegie has a five-year, $20 million loan facility from the Clean Energy Finance Corporation to support the $46 million CETO 6 Project.

ARENA’s future is, however, in doubt with the sitting of the new Senate. While Clive Palmer’s Palmer United Party has said it would support the Clean Energy Finance Corporation, the Climate Change Authority and the Renewable Energy Target, there has been no word on its stance towards ARENA, which the federal government is keen to dismantle.

The body celebrates its second anniversary on 1 July.