Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Xenesys Eyes French Polynesia in OTEC Quest; the Emerging Ocean-Based Tahiti-Hawaii Connection

We have OTEC News to thank for the heads-up on a deal signed in August that could be a significant step in the long march to develop ocean thermal energy conversion (OTEC). Xenesys Inc. of Japan and the Pacific Petroleum Company (PPC) group of Tahiti have joined in an effort “to conduct commercial and technical studies to realize Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion (OTEC) in French Polynesia, New Caledonia and Vanuatu,” according to the Xenesys press release. (Photo: Kiminao Satomi of Xenesys and Albert Moux of PPC.)

Evidence of their alliance eluded us until the recent OTEC News item, but some web surfing found this Xenesys release from February 2008 on a Memorandum of Understanding between the two firms. The August event appears to have been a good photo op involving the president of French Polynesia, Mr. Gaston Tong Sang.

The Hawaii Connection

This may be a bit of a stretch, but there’s an emerging story line linking PPC's president, Albert Moux, with Hawaii. Additional surfing turned up his presidency of Shell Va`a, the Tahitian outrigger canoe club sponsored by the oil company. Shell Va`a won its third consecutive Molokai Hoe canoe race from Molokai to Oahu two days ago, smashing the old record by nearly two minutes.

Judging from the success of his canoe club, Mr. Moux knows how to get results in ways local enthusiasts can’t match. Perhaps we might anticipate a similar impact with OTEC – first in French Polynesia and just maybe later in these northern climes, as well. 

We wish him and his colleagues as much success plumbing the ocean’s depths as they have had on its surface.

REPORT: Low Marks on Energy Integration

The Network for New Energy Choices has a dim view of Hawaii’s ability to encourage power integration from homeowners and small-business owners. Read the report here.  Hawaiian Electric Company disputes the findings.

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