Critically evaluate the various resources of the oceans which can be harnessed to meet the resource crisis in the world.
Theoretically speaking, the potential of oceans as an energy source is believe to be equivalent to approximately 4 to 18 million tonnes of oil. The ocean forms a valuable source of energy because it is a predominantly renewable source of energy. While petroleum and gas found on oceanic beds are non-renewable energy sources, there is a plethora of unexploited modes of generating power which is renewable. These renewable sources hold the key to resolving the resource crisis in the future, while dependence on non-renewable sources of energy will be futile.
However, a lot of the technologies involved in developing ocean or marine energy are in development or in the nascent phases of being implemented on a wider scale. Wave power refers to the harnessing of energy generated by ocean surface waves to generate electricity, assist water desalination plants, pump water etc. Deployment of ocean current turbines in locations with strong marine currents, in-stream turbines in rivers that move at a fast pace and tidal energy turbines in coastal and estuarine areas are the latest technologies that various countries are exploring. In these instances, the turbines extract energy from the fast moving water currents. Other renewable sources include ocean thermal energy, tidal power, osmotic power etc.
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