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Wave and Tidal Energy Market Size, Share & COVID-19 Impact Analysis, By Technology (Wave Energy {Oscillating Water Columns, Oscillating Body Converters, Others}, Tidal Energy {Tidal Turbine, Tidal Barrages, Others}), By Application (Power Generation, Desalination, Others) and Regional Forecasts, 2021-2028

Region : Global | Format: PDF | Report ID: FBI100584



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The global wave and tidal energy market size was valued at USD 0.47 billion in 2020 and is projected to grow from USD 0.59 billion in 2021 to USD 4.41 billion by 2028, growing at a CAGR of 33.2% during the forecast period. Based on our analysis, the global market exhibited a lower growth of 4.6% in 2020 as compared to the average year-on-year growth during 2017-2019. The rise in CAGR is attributable to this market’s demand and growth, returning to pre-pandemic levels once the pandemic is over. The global impact of COVID-19 has been unprecedented and staggering, with the market witnessing a negative impact on demand across all regions amid the pandemic. 

Wave energy is the process of transporting and capturing the power from the waves of the ocean surfaces and using it for applications such as power generation, desalination, environmental protection, and others. The device used for harvesting is wave energy converters developed to extract power from onshore, nearshore, or deep-water offshore locations. The abundant availability of ocean waves is considered one of the leading sources in power generation from renewable energy. For example, Pelamis wave power, earlier known as ocean power delivery (OPD), was the world’s first commercial wave project which delivers power produced by the generators  

Tidal energy is powered by the interaction of gravitational forces of the moon and the sun leading to the natural rise and fall of ocean tides or seawater levels. The rise and fall of tides are harnessed for power generation or other applications. Some technologies, including tidal barrages, turbines, are submerged into the ocean, which exploits the kinetic energy during the rise and fall of tides or by the water level difference and delivers a significant amount of power.

The increasing penetration of renewable energy sources and the potential of wave & tidal as power are leading toward its commercialization by initially deploying small arrays, which is positively impacting the wave and tidal energy market growth in the coming years.

COVID-19 Impacts:

Government Funding in Ocean Technologies Projects to Augment Growth

Global health emergencies caused by COVID-19 have disrupted impact on the energy sector due to decelerated transportation and economic activities globally. However, the growth of renewable energies was not halted as the globe battled the weakening economy during the pandemic. The increasing adoption of renewable sources has showcased the resilience of renewable energies and serves as the key factor that drives the demand for this technologies in the forthcoming years. For instance, the Atlantic Strategy Committee (ASC) has worked to develop the revamp Atlantic action plan for maritime. This enables reinforcement in the maritime strategy and contributes to the European Green Deal.

In addition to the resilience of renewable sources, various government initiatives and funding are pushing to offer revenue support to develop and deploy an innovative technologies portfolio for clean power generation. For instance, the Water Power Technologies Office (WPTO) has announced numerous funding opportunities throughout 2020, such as the wave-powered desalination systems for the waves to water prize competition with a cash prize of USD 3.3 million and others. Moreover, Orbital Marine Power has manufactured the next generation technology O2, its first commercial tidal turbine, which is targeted to be deployed at the European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC) in Orkney in 2020


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Government Initiatives and Technological Development to Foster Market Growth

The global market has been progressing in earnest, with many projects hitting milestones, gaining investment funds, testing prototypes, or other growth factors. These projects are adjacent to cost-competitive in a certain niche market, which tends to be the effective route for building and demonstrating experience in wave and tidal power and essential developmental steps for utility scales. Moreover, different technologies are used for power generation from wave and tidal, increasing opportunities for developing the wave and tidal systems.

In addition to technological advancement, the policies framework and support mechanism for revenue in the market reflect technological development from 2020 to 2030. For example, toward the end of 2020, EMEC and Perpetuus Tidal Energy Centre (PTEC) have signed a partnership to develop a tidal site in England. The project provides a clear market signal to tidal power in the United Kingdom, with committed further development and commercialization of tidal technologies. Moreover, the partnership works toward developing the TIGER project, which Interreg Channel funds for USD 46.75 million, building five sites for tidal energy development in France and the U.K. Furthermore, in February 2020, the European Marine Energy Centre Limited (EMEC) worked with Seabased to design and implement test program Seabased’s wave-to-grid energy park technology.


Power Generation by Renewable Energy Sources to Stimulate Growth

The rapid growth of power consumption globally has enhanced the power generation capacity to meet the global demand. Power generation by renewable energy sources (RESs) is the best alternative solution due to its availability and environment-friendly.  Among RESs, the energy conversion by ocean wave is considered one of the leading technologies to generate more than 1,000 – 10,000 GW of electrical power, which is anticipated to meet rising electricity demand, and propelling opportunities for producing electricity with wave power.

Wave power is more acceptable than other renewable sources due to its advantages, such as availability and easy forecasting. Other than that, the ocean wave’s has the highest production capacity, producing energy 90% of the time compared to other renewable sources. For instance, 33 wave converters are being deployed across eight countries with a combined capacity of 2.3MW. Furthermore, wave converters and devices are designed based on cases and are tested, decommissioned, redeveloped over the years. The U.K., for example, is the leading country that has the highest potential for wave power in Europe and has set to produce 20% of its electricity from ocean waves in 2020.

Rapid Development in Renewable Energy Sector to Drive Growth

The transformation of energy across the globe is accelerating the renewable sector with technological progress, development priorities, and others due to the rapid exhaustion of fossil fuels, and rising environmental concerns. With the necessary infrastructure resources, the government looks beyond the total energy supply with economic and scalable solutions. However, to assess the viability of a new form of power, countries such as the U.K. have initiated strategies for the growth of clean energy, including cost reduction in technology, reduction in carbon emission, and development of leading technology. Several technologies such as wind, solar, wave and tidal, and others have stood out for their importance in reducing carbon emissions.

Renewable energy technologies, such as wind and solar power, have been deployed in large numbers but possess limitations due to land availability, mismatch of supply and demand. Therefore, this has created tidal and wave power as a new renewable resource with massive untapped availability. For example, in September 2020, the MEC presented a detailed response to the U.K. Secretary of State for BEIS, offering cumulative benefits of USD 5.13 billion by 2040 and USD 1.79 billion from the wave and tidal sector. Moreover, the strategic support for this industry would achieve practical applications of the Green Transition and export major opportunities in technologies where the U.K. currently leads the world.


Lack of Technological Developments and Environmental Challenges to Hinder Market Growth

Wave and tidal devices are used in capturing the power contained in ocean for the generated electricity. Power extraction from waves and tide is not a recent occurrence, as researchers have been studying different concepts or solutions since the 1970s. Currently, this technology is evolving to a phase where demonstration of wave projects is being deployed. However, the technology has not converged with any design technology and the exploration of this technology has added complexity in the sector.

Consequently, lack of industrial coherence is bounded by supply chains for various planning and technological development components. In addition to the technical barrier, the higher cost associated with building and maintaining the structures is considerably higher than other forms of renewable sources as operating and maintaining any facility in the open sea has many challenges affecting the economics of scale, including the current and projected cost. However, as per IRENA wave energy technology brief, synergies with other industries such as oil and gas and wind are being pursued, reducing the cost of installations, operations, and maintenance, which accounts for 41% of project life costs. 


By Technology Analysis

Tidal Energy Segment Accounted for Largest Wave and Tidal Energy Market Share

Based on technology, the market is categorized into wave and tidal technology. This technology segment accounted for a significant market share and is further bifurcated into a tidal turbine, barrages, and other technologies.

The tidal turbine works on the same principle as wind turbines and extracts power from moving water. The turbines have blades that turn a rotor to power a generator. The turbine is placed on the seafloor where strong tidal flow is present, which causes the rotors to rotate around the horizontal axis and generate power.

The barrage is another type of tidal technology system which uses a structure similar to a dam or barrier called a barrage and harvests power from the height difference between high and low tide. The barrage is installed across an inlet of oceans which forms a tidal basin. The water levels and flow level are controlled by the sluice gates on the barrage and allow the tidal basin to fill on the incoming high tides and empty through an electricity generation system. The other segment comprises fences, lagoons, hydrofoils, etc.

The wave energy technologies consist of two main working principles for harnessing power from the waves. The technology has emerged into oscillating water columns (OWC), oscillating bodies (OB) converters, and others.

The oscillating water column device is hollow in structures and is submerged partially into the sea or ocean. The converters harness the wave power by oscillating motion of seawater, which raises the level of water within the hollow semi-submerged structure, causes the compression of enclosed air, and drives the turbine. The main advantages of these systems are the reliability of devices with usually fewer moving parts. Moreover, this technology is developed for nearshore, offshore and onshore type and is well suited for all the possible extraction of wave power.

The oscillating body has the most diverse group of wave converters which consist of floating structures with a buoyancy that draws the power from the incoming waves by the oscillatory motion of the structure or buoy. The oscillating body convertor (OBC) has high structural efficiency, allowing large amounts of power to harvest with small and low-cost devices, reducing capital costs. Moreover, in addition to power generation, this technology is also used to desalinate ocean or seawater. The other segment comprises overtopping devices, bulge waves, rotating mass, submerged pressure differential, etc.

By Application Analysis

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Power Generation Application to Dominate Market

Based on application, the market is categorized into power generation, desalination, and others. The power generation segment dominates for the significant market share owing to the rapid consumption of electrical power across the globe and technological development. Thus, it’s becoming necessary to enhance the capacity of power generation to meet the global demand.  The electrical power generation from ocean is gaining popularity due to its prospective, predictable, and highly available compared to other conventional renewable resources and dominated the market.

The desalination segment is also the key segment for the market, as seawater has become a practice to produce drinking water and potable water and is widely used due to its more resilient nature. The desalination process removes salt and other unwanted content from the seawater and provides fresh water for human consumption or agriculture.


Europe Wave and Tidal Energy Market Size, 2020 (USD Billion)

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The wave and tidal energy market is segmented into North America, Europe, and Asia Pacific.

The market in Europe stood at USD 0.30 billion in 2020. The increasing power supply from renewable sources is gaining a larger market share across Europe and is likely to fuel the market growth in the region.

The U.K. accounts for the most extensive historical deployment of this technology and has reached a new milestone with the European Marine Energy Center (EMEC). Moreover, the European Marine Energy Center (EMEC) is the largest site for the projects of wave technology and has hosted a large share of the wave energy developers, which are close to reaching commercialization. For instance, the EMEC closely works with Mocean to gauge their device testing in 2021 at EMEC through the Wave Energy Scotland program.

Countries from North America are putting collaborative efforts amongst industry, research organizations, and government and focus on realizing opportunities in marine renewable sources. In addition, the support for wave and tidal developers has increased, and the sector is progressing steadily. For instance, the new test facility for wave devices and arrays, PacWave, will have four test berths near Oregon's offshore location. Moreover, The Canadian province of Nova Scotia has taken world-leading steps in establishing the market for tidal technology with Feed-In Tariff (FIT) for several tidal power demonstration farms. It has attracted leading European developers with interest in tidal power.

The countries from the Asia Pacific, such as India and China, are putting efforts to support the demonstration and implementation of wave and tidal projects. They are also engaging in development in wave and tidal projects with government support for practical realization.

For instance, China has surged forward by investing heavily in RD&I and has produced several domestic turbine manufacturers. Moreover, IIT Madras in India has collaborated with the University of Hawaii to work on wave-powered desalination for the people affected by disaster under the Wave to Water scheme of DoE, U.S.


Eco Wave Power Focuses on Expanding its Product Line and Utilize its Channels to Market New Products

The market comprises small and large players delivering scale products for numerous applications shaping the competitive landscape. Key Players operating in the market are EcoWave Power, CorPower, Mocean Energy, Nova Innovations, Orbital Marine Power, working on technological advancement to hold a substantial presence globally.

Eco Wave Power is a Swedish company that has developed a patented, innovative, and cost-effective technology for turning ocean and sea waves into green electricity. The company owns and operates wave arrays connected with the grid according to the Power Purchase Agreement (PPA). The company collaborates with established and green energy companies, electric utilities, electric ministries, project developers, manufacturers, and others to meet the rising demand for global clean, renewable, and affordable energy.

  • On June 14, 2021, EcoWave Power announced the arrival of wave conversion device on the site at Jaffa, Israel, ahead of the installation. The EWP – EDP project collaborates with EDF Renewables IL and is funded by Israel's Energy Ministry. The conversion unit will be located on land, which has enabled easy access for operations and maintenance.


  • Eco Wave Power (Sweden)

  • CorPower Ocean AB (Sweden)

  • Mocean Energy (Scotland)

  • Aquamarine Power (U.K.)

  • SSE Renewables (U.K.)

  • Wello Oy (Finland)

  • SINN Power GmbH (Germany)

  • OceanEnergy (Ireland)

  • Ocean Power Technologies (U.S.)

  • Ocean Renewable Power Company (U.S.)

  • Orbital Marine Power (Scotland)

  • Tacardo B.V (Netherlands)

  • SIMEC Atlantis Energy (U.K.)

  • Tidal Lagoon Plc (U.K.)

  • Nova Innovations (Scotland)

  • Andritz Hydro Hammerfest (Austria)

  • Tenax Energy (Australia)


  • June 2021 - Mocean Energy commenced testing its Blue X wave energy prototype at the European Marine Energy (EMEC) in Orkney. The wave energy machine was recently towed from Kirkwall to EMEC's Scapa flow test site for commission for initial sea trials.

  • April 2021 -  Orbital Marine Power commenced Orbital O2, the world’s most powerful tidal turbine. The turbine has been launched from the Port of Dundee in Scotland and will be connected to the European Marine Center in Orkney, where it will be operational.


An Infographic Representation of Wave and Tidal Energy Market

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The market research report presents a comprehensive assessment of the industry by offering valuable insights, facts, industry-related information, and historical data. Several methodologies and approaches are adopted to make meaningful assumptions and views to formulate the market research report. Furthermore, the report covers a detailed analysis and information as per market segments, including technology, application, and regions, helping our readers to get a comprehensive overview of the global industry.




Study Period


Base Year


Forecast Period


Historical Period



Value (USD Billion) & Volume (MW)


By Technology, By Application, and By Region



By Technology

  • Wave Energy

    • Oscillating Water Columns

    • Oscillating Body Convertor

    • Others

  • Tidal Energy

    • Tidal Turbine

    • Tidal Barrages

    • Others

By Application

  • Power Generation

  • Desalination

  • Others

By Region

  • North America (By Technology, By Application, and By Country)

    • U.S.

    • Canada

  • Europe (By Technology, By Application, and By Country)

    • U.K.

    • Scotland

    • France

    • Sweden

    • Italy

    • Germany

    • Rest of Europe

  • Asia Pacific (By Technology, By Application, and By Country)

    • China

    • South Korea

    • Rest of Asia Pacific

Frequently Asked Questions

Fortune Business Insights says that the global industry size was USD 0.47 billion in 2020 and is projected to reach USD 4.41 billion by 2028.

In 2020, Europe stood at USD 0.30 billion.

Growing at a CAGR of 33.2%, the market will exhibit a steady growth rate during the forecast period (2021-2028).

The tidal energy segment is anticipated to dominate during the forecast period.

The availability of ocean waves and tidal energy resources drives the global market.

EcoWave Power, CorPower, Mocean Energy, Nova Innovations, and Orbital Marine Power are the key players operating across the industry.

Europe dominated the market in terms of share in 2020

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