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Ocean Power Takes Step Toward First Commercial U.S. Wave Farm

Ocean Power Technologies Inc., a New Jersey-based marine technology developer, reached agreement with 11 federal and state agencies that draws it closer to installing the first commercial wave farm in the U.S.

Ocean Power’s agreement with the agencies covers issues including water quality, recreation, crabbing and fishing, the company said today in a Business Wire statement. The deal is a “major step” toward getting the first wave farm license ever issued by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, it said.

Ocean Power plans to install 10 of its PowerBuoy devices off Reedsport, Oregon, once it gets the go-ahead. The farm would have a capacity of 1.5 megawatts, enough to provide electricity for 1,000 homes.

“This development will help pave the way for the United States to retain a technological advantage in wave power,” Ocean Power Executive Chairman George Taylor said in the statement. “Wave energy has the potential to create manufacturing jobs in America while providing low-cost clean, environmentally benign electricity to help replace the use of fossil fuels.”

Oregon Governor Ted Kulongoski said in the statement that the manufacture of the first buoy had already created dozens of jobs in the state. “When the 10-buoy wave power project is built, a whole new industry will be created to benefit our coastal communities,” he said.

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