Marine Renewable Energy

| | Námskeið: CMM 36

Kennari: John Colton

Námskeiðslýsing í kennsluskrá

Um námskeiðið

This course explores marine renewable energy (MRE) potential in our ocean and other current environments. This would include wave, tidal, offshore wind and even the less known but viable technologies such as ocean energy thermal conversion (OTEC), and salinity gradient. Heavy investment  by the EU to support a Blue Economy and  federal, provincial, and state investments in Canada/US is increasing growth in the MRE sector. We explore the many factors that support MRE project development. Examples include understanding the technologies, policy to support MRE, environmental and socioeconomic impacts, and marine spatial planning with respect to MRE. Case studies highlight examples of MRE across Europe, North America, and increasingly in Asia and the South Pacific.  Students develop a strong sense of the overall planning approach to MRE and key tools/frameworks to facilitate sustainable growth of the sector. When possible, field trips offer an opportunity to explore the power of the ocean and currents first hand with innovative work occurring in the region of  the Westfjords.


I’ve worked at Acadia University in Wolfville, Nova Scotia for over 20 years in the Community Development and the Environmental and Sustainability Studies programs. My research areas span the terrestrial and marine environments and are often applied in nature focussing on meaning community outcomes. An example of this might include the Business and Community Toolkit for Tidal Energy Development or the Tidal Energy Community Engagement Handbook. I’ve worked extensively in First Nation communities on economic development initiatives and more recently with rural coastal communities and local and provincial governments exploring the potential of MRE. I’m particularly interested in the nature of community benefits and processes that support social acceptance (or not) or MRE development. I’m a founding member of the Acadia Tidal Energy Institute and serve as head of department for Community Development. I’ve also worked in the adventure/ecotourism tourism guiding wilderness river expeditions to remote areas in Alaska, British Columbia, the Yukon and Northwest Territories since the late 1980’s with Canadian River Expeditions.

Working at the UW is the highlight of my year; an immersive mutual learning experience with engaged students in a program closely connected and interwoven with the community and environmental context.