bioWAVETM is a point-absorber wave energy converter with integrated power take-off, O-DriveTM, and shore connection for grid integration. It is a bottom-mounted pitching device that spans the water column and absorbs energy both from heaving motion at the surface and pitching motion, from subsurface back-and-forth motion. The installed 250kW pilot device has three cylindrical buoyant ‘blades’ that can be proportionally filled with air and water to tune power capture to the wave environment. The blades can be disengaged from the power take-off unit and completely filled with water, to sink for Survival mode in harsh wave conditions.
Bass Strait, 26m, Port Fairy VIC Australia.
Entura, Hydro-Electric Corporation, was commissioned to undertake Environmental Impact studies and prepare an application for Consent for use and development of Crown land. In this body of work, they surveyed the existing environment, assessed the potential impacts of the Port Fairy Pilot Wave Energy Project and proposed mitigation and management actions, which were incorporated into BPS’ Environmental Management Plan.
The bioWAVE pilot was manufactured in Vietnam was loaded onto the Heavy Lift Vessel for transport to Australia on the 15th November 2015. Onshore electrical work was completed and tested with the subsea cable on 5th December 2015. The bioWAVE Pilot device was installed by Heavy Lift vessel on 14th December 2015. The shore connection cable was damaged in the process of installation. It was replaced on 21 December 2016. BPS has conducted multiple inspection operations since installation of the device. Pending results from commissioning, BPS intends an operational period of 6-18 months.
The Environmental Impact Assessment was submitted to the Victorian State Department of Sustainability and Environment, for Consent for use and development of Crown land in December 2011. Consent was received in April 2012, for use of the site at Port Fairy until 1 July 2015. Review of this consent application included BPS’ Environmental Management Plan, EIA, Community Consultation plan and Project plans. In 2014, this Consent was extended until July 2017. In November 2012, BPS received the Planning Permit from Moyne Shire. This permit was extended in 2015, for works up to November 2017. In May 2013, BPS received a license for 5 years for the shore-connection cable corridor and the bioWAVE exclusion zone. This was given by the Victorian State Department of Environment and Primary Industries.
Environmental Management Plan, Environmental Risk Register (BPS_EMP_092016_2_2 & BPS_ERR_092015_2_0):
- Hooded plover and fairy tern breeding sites will be avoided for shore cable installation
- Noise emissions will not exceed temporary threshold shift for cetaceans and pinnipeds
- Cetaceans - physical encounter will trigger device shutdown for 2 hours
- Cables are self-burying and inflexible relative to rope, so should mitigate risk of entanglement
- Cetacean monitoring program
- There were no observations of species, communities or habitats of particular ecological or conservation significance, however, because the bull kelp Durvillaea potatorum stands are more vulnerable it is recommended disturbance to this habitat is minimised where possible
Cetacean Monitorin Plan (BPS_CMP_092015_1_2):
- Southern Right Whale spends large periods in Winter close to shore along the Western Victorian coast.