Head of the Policy and Innovation Group, University of Edinburgh. This interview was conducted as part of France Energies Marines’ 2020 annual report.
As the former President of the Technology Collaboration Programme on Ocean Energy Systems established by the International Energy Agency (IEAOES), could you explain its objective?
The main objective of this programme is to bring governments together, share information internationally, and stimulate ORE-sector activity. Through the programme, we are able to share learning and create strategic plans for the sector without duplicating our efforts. In this way, we hope to accomplish more than if every nation were working separately. Our strategic initiatives are focused on issues such as energy costs, the number of jobs available at international level, and environmental impacts. Without this joint effort, individual nations would find it very difficult to obtain this sort of data.
How is France Energies Marines involved in this programme? What is its role?
France Energies Marines has been an active member for 5 years, and has participated on behalf of the French Agency for Ecological Transition (ADEME) since 2019. Most programme members are national Energy Ministries or Agencies, but sometimes an organisation with a deeper understanding of a particular subject— in this case, the ORE sector — is appointed to participate on their behalf. France Energies Marines plays an important role in the programme, as it participates in defining the strategy, deciding what type of initiatives to support, and allocating budgets, etc. The Institute also plays a key role in the implementation of studies in areas such as environmental integration and the evaluation of jobs the sector can offer.
If you had to highlight one collaborative activity led by France Energies Marines, which would it be?
The evaluation of job opportunities, which examines, at international level, the job outlook in the ocean energy sector for the coming decades. This analysis was developed on the basis of a study originally carried out in France. France Energies Marines came up with the idea of reproducing it internationally, and played a very active role in carrying out this strategic task for IEA-OES. Besides this initiative, I have been working with the Institute for several years on a number of strategic European projects such as DTOCEANPLUS and OCEANSET, and I have always found France Energies Marines to be extremely professional, and a good partner.
Photo credit : Yao Hui