Monday, May 4, 2009

You’ve Come a Long Way, Baby; Once-Ignored Ocean Technology Is Finding Its Place in the Sun

Advocates of ocean thermal energy conversion (OTEC), which extracts solar energy trapped in the sea for use on land, have to be somewhat surprised by OTEC’s sudden emergence into the mainstream of renewable energy media coverage.

OTEC was being overlooked so consistently that we started this blog to write about it, as noted in post #1. And just two days later we complained that OTEC had been left off a local editorial’s list of renewable technologies that Hawaii needs to lessen oil’s grip on the state.

But that was then. OTEC has gone from completely left out of editorials to being the sole subject of one in today’s Honolulu Star-Bulletin that was inspired by a New York Times story published last week and reprinted in yesterday’s Bulletin.

This well-deserved attention is important because it makes the average citizen aware of OTEC’s potential, something we’ve always thought is necessary. It’s not enough for scientists and engineers to believe in the technology; voters also have to understand something about OTEC to help elected officials appreciate its importance, too.

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