5 of February 2016

Cape Verde wins SEFA grant to develop revolutionary wave-powered desalination system

In Cape Verde, AfDB granted US$930,000 under the Sustainable Energy Fund for Africa (SEFA) on December 21, 2015 to develop the world's first wave-powered desalination system.

Wave2O™, to be located in Praia Grande, Cabo Verde, will operate completely “off-grid” and supply more than 48,000 people with clean fresh water at a competitive cost. The system is expected to have a capacity of 4,000 m3/day of water and will eliminate 5,400 metric tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) per year.

Resolute Marine Energy (RME) Cape Verde, a subsidiary of the US-based RME and the company which will develop the project, considers Cape Verde’s abundant near-shore wave resources to be particularly well-suited for development of this new technology.

Cape Verde’s access to sustainable water resources is the second lowest of any country in Sub-Saharan Africa. Constant water shortages create stressful living conditions for the entire population. And while Cape Verde has abundant renewable energy resources including solar, wind and biomass, most of its electricity is currently generated through imported fossil fuels. The unique Wave2O™ program will help the country meet its ambitious goal of replacing fossil-based electricity generation with 100% renewable energy by 2020.

This revolutionary water production solution is fully in line with AfDB’s commitment to support energy infrastructure, climate change mitigation and adaptation, and access to clean drinking and agricultural water.  The project is also well aligned with the AfDB’s “New Deal on Energy for Africa”, the Sustainable Energy for All (SE4All) and Africa Renewable Energy Initiative (AREI)’s objectives of increasing renewable energy penetration.