The National Hydropower Association (NHA) in the US and the Ocean Renewable Energy Coalition (OREC) have joined forces to create the Marine Energy Council in a move that will see the NHA provide a unified voice as the national trade association for the full spectrum of water power technologies.

"Our two industries have so much in common, and it’s not just water," said NHA Executive Director Linda Church Ciocci. "Bringing the conventional and marine energy industries together under one roof provides benefits to both as we collectively advocate the importance of all hydropower technologies as solutions to our nation’s energy challenges."

"For some time, OREC has been assessing ways to better coordinate and strengthen its voice. We concluded that joining forces with NHA would be in everyone’s best interest and thus OREC is delighted to partner with NHA to promote the responsible use of our nation’s abundant ocean and river energy resources," added OREC Chairman Bill Staby.

Over the past nine months, a diverse group of industry representatives, including technology developers, academic institutions, consultants, component suppliers and service professionals representing the wave, tidal, ocean current and riverine sectors came together to evaluate several options and developed a proposal outlining a new structure within NHA that would allow it to represent the entire hydropower industry.

The Boards of Directors of both NHA and OREC unanimously approved the plan in late November.