The United States has made the first step toward harnessing the potential of wave energy, a powerful source of renewable energy which researchers have been studying for decades. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) issued last month a license for what would be the first commercial-scale, utility grid-connected wave energy test site in the United States. Oregon State University received that license to build and operate the PacWave South testing facility as the industry is developing technology and devices potentially capable of harnessing the power of ocean waves. Despite decades of studies, wave energy is still little developed—both in the U.S. and elsewhere—because researchers are still looking at ways to reconcile feasibility and costs in a complex marine environment. In theory, the potential is enormous. In practice, wave energy will need a lot more testing and technology development if it hopes to become a viable renewable energy source. Nevertheless, […]