Seaside Stories

Wave Energy

April 6, 2011 | by Shanda Bonn

Another successful SOLV Beach Clean Up has come and gone. Spring is slowly making itself known as intermittent patches of brilliant sunlight break through the clouds. And Earth Month is now upon us. Yep, Earth Month. It’s not official, but as the popularity of the environmental movement has taken hold over the years, events and activities have gone beyond one day or one weekend to events all month long.

Each year since 1970 people around the nation have been observing Earth Day on April 22nd. Earth Day began as a peaceful protest organized by a US Senator upon the meltdown of fuel rods in the Savannah River nuclear plant near Aiken, South Carolina. The public was highly unaware of the events unfolding and the government was none to keen to let them know. But activists felt it was time for the American people to stand up, take notice and make a difference.

Taking a walk along the beach recently, both soothed and awed by the pounding surf, I thought about the power of the waves, and a recent article I read came to mind. The subject was wave energy, but never having heard of it, I quickly passed it by. But after my time at the beach, I decided to give the article a second look.

Wave energy refers to energy generated from the power of waves near their surface. There are different types of devices designed to convert wave energy, but the ones that seems to be most in use at the moment as researchers continue to investigate this source of renewable energy are buoys. Columbia Power Technologies, an Oregon-based alternative energy company, recently launched a prototype wave energy buoy in the gentle waters of the Puget Sound as it races to be one of the first suppliers of wave-generated energy.

There is one competitor ahead of them who has already launched wave energy buoys off the coast of Reedsport, Oregon, and who hopes to have enough of them in the water by 2012 to power 400 homes!

I am proud of our very “green” state, so often at the forefront of the environmental movement. And I expect we’ll see a few of these buoys off our own shores right here in Seaside sometime in the future (as long as they don’t interfere with the crabbing and fishing!) As a matter of fact, not too long ago, the Oregon Wave Energy Trust held their Ocean Renewable Energy Conference here in Seaside.

Our coastline is among a few places in the world that has the key elements to tap into wave energy – namely frequent and powerful storms several miles off the coast that generate powerful wave energy. I find it amazing that our ocean waters have so much to offer!

Leave a Reply

and so much more!

The War Years in Seaside

Blimp patrols were a common feature in Seaside during World War II.

Learn More
Awards Program for Excellence in Customer Service

New Customer Service Awards Program in Seaside, Oregon

Learn More
Flying Into the Seaside Airport

Visitors often see an aerial photo of Seaside Municipal Airport and ask, “Are you sure that’s not Hawaii?” The lush green la...

Learn More
Family Reunion

Seaside is a hot spot for family reunion get-togethers.

Learn More
The Seaside Parade of Lights is one of many holiday festivities
Holiday Festivities in Seaside

Seaside is one of the Coast’s most beloved destinations for holiday shopping and seasonal celebrations. Plan a visit around thes...

Learn More
Broadway Field is a Community Gem

Renovated Broadway Field is a community gem

Learn More
Seaside’s Famous Feathered Citizens

First two weekends of April are filled with bird education

Learn More
Beach Access for Everyone

Beach Wheelchair Access is Growing on the Coast Seaside is proud to be among a small number of coastal towns in Oregon to offer fr...

Learn More
Wave Meets Wall

Back in 1925, the waves would encroach on Seaside's Turnaround with a dramartic ferocity

Learn More
Seaside Skatepark

The Seaside Skatepark (also called the PTR “Hometown Park”) has a unique history. It was opened in June of 2007, and was built by Placed to Ride. The owner of Placed to Ride, Stefan Hauser, lives here in Seaside.

Learn More
Episode Four: the Seaside Museum & Butterfield Cottage

Audio walking tour of the Seaside Museum & Butterfield Cottage

Learn More
After the Storm

A look at a storm from the early 1900s in Seaside

Learn More
Discover Marine Wonders at Low Tide

One of the great delights when visiting Seaside — especially for families — is coming into contact with the otherworldly wonde...

Learn More
How To Paddle Seaside

Kayaking and paddle boarding options abound in Seaside, Oregon. Find out what you need to know to float the coast....

Learn More
Camping in Seaside

Memorial Day weekend is right around the corner. One of my very favorite things to do during Memorial Day weekend is to go camping. I love setting up the tents, snuggling in a warm sleeping bag, sitting around the campfire roasting marshmallows for s’mores, and smelling like a campfire all weekend. I love every bit of it! If you’ve never camped by the Pacific Ocean then you are missing out! You get to add the salty air, sandy beach, and all the benefits of being near Seaside to add to your camping experience.

Learn More
Seaside Hotelier Recognized by ORLA as Operator of the Year

Oregon Restaurant and Lodging Association names Oregon Lodging Operator of the Year

Learn More
Episode Five: The Historic Gilbert District

We explore the Gilbert District in this walk down memory lane

Learn More
View from the Pacific Pier

The view circa 1906 of Seaside's old Pacific Pier

Learn More