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Riding the waves

Here in the UK our waves have more energy than anywhere else in Europe.

In theory wave power could meet all of the UK's electricity needs, but we'd have to build a huge number of wave power stations to harness the energy around our coast.

We don't have any plans to do this. At the moment wave power makes only a tiny amount of electricity for the UK.

The world's first proper wave power station opened in 2000 on the island of Islay off the west coast of Scotland. Islay is home to around 3400 people - and over 60,000 geese. Its wave power station makes electricity for about 400 households on the island.

The wave power station also makes electricity for the Islay Wave Bus. The Wave Bus looks like an ordinary bus and travels on land.

It is one of only seven electric buses being driven around the UK at the moment. It recharges overnight from the wave-generated electricity supplied by the power station.

Because it gets the electricity it needs in this way, the bus is much cheaper to run than an ordinary one. In fact, the fuel for the bus costs just 8 pence a mile, compared with 23 pence a mile for a bus that runs on diesel fuel.

What is "Diesel"?
What is "Electricity"?
What is "Wave power"?
Fascinating fact
Fascinating fact

Waves on Islay
Waves on Islay

Islay Wave Bus
Islay Wave Bus

Wicked wave power
Watch: Wicked wave power