Annex IV distributes metadata forms (questionnaires) to solicit information from developers involved in environmental monitoring around marine renewable energy project sites around the world. This page provides project descriptions, baseline assessment, post-installation monitoring, and links to available data and reports. Content is updated on an annual basis.

PLOCAN Marine Test Site for Ocean Energy Converters

Project Site Annex IV

Title: PLOCAN Marine Test Site for Ocean Energy Converters
Start Date:
April 05, 2008
Country:
Info Updated:
May 14, 2019
A prototype of a wave energy converter built by the Spanish company PIPO SYSTEMS in the framework of the WELCOME project
Project Status: 
Test site operational
Technology: 
Wave Energy Converters and Offshore Wind Turbines
Project Scale: 
Test Site for Prototypes
Installed Capacity: 
10 MW (potential capacity 15 MW)
Description: 

Marine test site for emerging oceanic technologies focused on ocean energy converters. PLOCAN is a Public Consortium ruled by the Spanish Government and the Regional Government of the Canary Islands. PLOCAN is a marine scientific and technical infrastructure to facilitate the development of new oceanic technologies providing different services to the enterprises and researchers. The five strategic lines are: ocean observation, underwater vehicles, marine test site, platform of innovation and Training centre.

Location: 

The site is located on the east coast of Gran Canaria Island of the Canary Islands in Spain. It is located at the border of the continental platform with depths between 20-600m in the Atlantic Ocean.

Process Status: 

This test site is operative for grid and non-grid connected prototypes.

Grid connection: 2 cables x 5 MW

1st cable of 5 MW: operative. 5 MW offshore wind turbine connected (since 2018)

2nd cable of 5 MW: pending to enter in operation.

Licensing Information: 

Environmental impact assessment.

 

The Regional Government of the Canary Islands was in charge of the environmental procedure. The Authorization was issued in April 2013 to install the submarine electrical infrastructure and wave energy converters.

 

The test site area has been authorized by the Council of Ministers agreement of 14th March 2014. This test site has a marine area of 23 km2.

Key Environmental Issues: 

Brief description on the most important environmental issues raised by the project (e.g. Sensitive species/habitats/areas that were of particular concern and/or received special protection) and how they were addressed.

 

The test site is out of sensitive areas in terms of NATURA 2000 or any National and Regional Declarations. The most interesting species detected in the area are:

  • Avrainvillea canariensis: Algae declared as “Interesting for Canary ecosystems” by the Regional Law 4/2010.
  • Mäerl: Include in the Annex V of Habitat Directive.

 

Environmental Webpage: http://observatorios.plocan.eu/index.php/en/coastal-observatory

PLOCAN Marine Test Site for Ocean Energy Converters is located in Spain.

Baseline Assessment: PLOCAN Marine Test Site for Ocean Energy Converters

ReceptorStudy Description Design and Methods Results Status
  • Water Quality

In-situ.

Survey conducted with multi-parameter probe: salinity, temperature, pH, turbidity, oxygen.

No contamination detected.

Completed
  • Water Quality

Laboratory.

Sampling with oceanographic bottles. Parameters: nutrients, pigments, metals, pH, salinity, oxygen.

No contamination detected.

Completed
  • Geomorphology

Sediments morphology, type and quality (metals, PAHs, PCBs, Organic matter).

Van Veen dredger to collect bottom samples.

Sand, Gravels and Rocks. No contamination detected.

Completed
  • Geomorphology

Sub-bottom layers.

Sub-bottom profiler TOPAS.

Unconsolidated sediment layer thickness:

1 m-10 m

Completed
  • Physical Environment

Wave conditions.

Waverider buoy data analysis.

Average values:

  • Hs = 1.05 m
  • Tp = 8 s
Completed
  • Physical Environment

Marine currents.

Drifters and ADCP.

Average value:

  • V = 0.2 m/s
Underway
  • Physical Environment

Underwater acoustic survey.

Hydrophones at 3 depths.

Pending of results compilation.

Underway
  • Physical Environment

Electromagnetic Fields.

Electric and magnetic field measurements.

Report in Spanish. English summary report is pending.

Completed
  • Benthos

Identification of benthic community.

Video transects, previous existing information, sampling.

Most interesting species:

  • Avrainvillea canariensis (algae)
  • Mäerl community
Completed
  • Fish and Fisheries

Study of fish and fisheries in the area.

Review of existing information.

Presence of some species of sharks documented. Local fisheries activity.

Completed
  • Large Vertebrates

Presence of marine mammals in the area.

Review of existing information.

Few mammals and turtles. Report in Spanish. English summary report is pending.

Completed
  • Marine Uses

Review of uses.

Review and consulting existing information.

Slight interaction with local fisheries.

Completed
Reports and Papers
  • Environmental Monitoring at the PLOCAN Marine Test Site  (ICOE 2016), Poster
Research

Project name: WELCOME (Wave Energy Lift Converter Multiple España)

Sector: Wave energy

Status: Finished

Environmental monitoring:

  • Oceanographic parameters: Temperature, Salinity, Turbidity, pH, Oxygen, Currents speed, Waves
  • Meteorological parameters: Wind speed and direction, Atmospheric pressure

 

Project name: UNDIGEN

Sector: Wave energy

Status: Testing

Environmental monitoring:

  • Temperature, Salinity, Turbidity, pH, Oxygen, Chlorophyll, Nutrients, PAHs, Submarine noise

 

Project name: WELLO (Penguin II)

Sector: Wave energy

Status: Ongoing

Environmental monitoring:

  • Seabed sediments and species, submarine noise (planned)

Post-Installation Monitoring: PLOCAN Marine Test Site for Ocean Energy Converters

ReceptorMonitoring Program Description Design and Methods Results Status
  • Physical Environment

In Situ: temperature, conductivity, pH, oxygen, turbidity, chlorophyll, hydrocarbons, wind speed and direction, air temperature, atmospheric pressure, rain, relative humidity, radiation PAR.

Seasonal boat based survey with multi-parameter probe.

N/A

Underway
  • Physical Environment

In Situ: temperature, conductivity, pH, oxygen, turbidity, chlorophyll, hydrocarbons, wind speed and direction, air temperature, atmospheric pressure, rain, relative humidity, radiation PAR.

Permanent deployed oceanographic buoys.

N/A

Planned
  • Physical Environment

Laboratory: nutrients, pigments, metals, pH, conductivity, oxygen.

Seasonal boat based sampling with oceanographic bottles.

N/A

Underway
  • Physical Environment

Waves.

Permanent deployed wave buoy.

N/A

Underway
  • Physical Environment

Currents.

Permanent deployed ADCP.

N/A

Planned
  • Noise

Underwater noise.

Permanent deployed monitor noise systems.

N/A

Underway
  • EMF

Electromagnetic fields.

Electromagnetic field monitoring produced from cables and submarine station.

N/A

Planned
  • Benthos

Monitoring the impact on benthic communities.

  • ROV inspections
  • Permanent underwater video cameras
  • Inspections with divers

N/A

Planned
  • Fish and Fisheries

Monitoring the presence of fish, particularly sharks.

Visual surveys.

N/A

Planned
  • Large Vertebrates

Monitoring the presence of marine mammals

  • Boat based surveys (visual counts)
  • Permanent submarine video cameras
  • Acoustic monitoring

N/A

Planned
Reports and Papers

N/A

Research

N/A

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