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Changing tides: U.S. okays wave-energy facility permit

It is perhaps not all that ironic that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has apparently given the green light to a permit that will enable a company called Renew Blue to create what is described as the first commercial-class wave-powered facility in the very place that is the center of tremendous energy controversy right now: the Gulf of Mexico.

It is perhaps not all that ironic that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has apparently given the green light to a permit that will enable a company called Renew Blue to create what is described as the first commercial-class wave-powered facility in the very place that is the center of tremendous energy controversy right now: the Gulf of Mexico.

The deal gives Renew Blue, a subsidiary of Independent Natural Resources, the right to construct a facility that will not only generate electricity but also produce fresh desalinated water. Two green technologies in one! The specific technology that will be used at the facility (off Freeport, Texas) is the Seadog Pump System.

The facility, which should be fully operational by the end of 2010, will desalinate up to 3,000 gallons of water per day. To start, the facility (which will be officially operated by Texas Natural Resources), will conduct an environmental study to determine impact on marine life.

Incidentally, out sister blog site Smart Planet has just published a primer on wave energy technology, if you need a little more background reading.