Blue Energy: Sustainable CO2-free energy from water

A major challenge in sustainability is the provision of clean and secure energy sources that are suitable alternatives to fossil fuels. Dutch firm REDstack uses Reverse Electrodialysis (RED) technology for the generation of sustainable and CO2-free energy. Blue energy, also called osmotic power, or salinity gradient power (SGP), is energy generated from the difference in salt concentrations between salt water and fresh water.

REDstack, FujiFilm & Wetsus

The RED process has been described as: “an array of alternating anion and cation exchange membranes used to generate electric power from the free energy of river and sea water.” When salt- and freshwater mix together and are passed through a stack of these membranes, electricity is generated and fed into the grid. At Breezanddijk, on the Afsluitdijk in the north of the Netherlands which separates the North Sea from the freshwater Ijsselmeer, this technology has been successfully tested and developed in a ‘real-world’ pilot plant. REDstack and its partners FujiFilm and Wetsus (a European centre of excellence for sustainable water technology) are currently working on further improvements and at scaling up the technology.