Blue Energy refers to a set of emerging technologies that exploit marine sources to generate renewable energy. These devices still are at the early stage but promising pilot projects have been demonstrated mainly in ocean seas. Although just a few experiences have been developed in the Mediterranean sea until now, the potential of waves, offshore wind and marine currents - besides marine biomass and heat and salinity gradients - can be exploited to generate energy from the sea.

General objective

The MAESTRALE project aims to lay the basis for a Maritime Energy Deployment Strategy in the Mediterranean by sharing knowledge among scientists, policy makers, entrepreneurs and citizens and prompting effective actions and investments for blue growth.
Funding program:
Interreg MED 2014-2020
01/11/2016 - 30/11/2019

(36 Month)
Budget: 2.4 Millions of Euro

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Studying approach

MAESTRALE follows an interdisciplinary approach for studying innovative solutions and testing their concrete feasibility in the Med area, clearly highlighting advantages and hindrances. Project partners will cooperate to detect maritime renewable energy potentials in participating countries as regards their physical, legal, technological, economic and social contexts. For example, investigated issues will concern environmental sustainability and potential impacts on marine ecosystems, social acceptability, possible conflicts with other economic activities.

Testing approach

Pilot initiatives to install operating plants in the MED area will be hypothesised and tested through a participative design process. Blue Energy Labs (BEL) will be organised in each participating region. BELs will involve local enterprises, public authorities, knowledge institutions and citizens and will operate to support blue energy policies and raise awareness among local stakeholders, facilitate social acceptance, avoid uncertainty and improve innovation capacities and competitiveness.

Project results

1 WEBGIS portal: available at, the MAESTRALE geodatabase provides spatial explicit data to inform and support initiatives for blue growth. It embeds information on energy potentials in the Mediterranean basin concerning waves, wind, marine and tidal currents. It also display records of 50 case studies in Europe with details on technology, production yield and technical requirements. The MAESTRALE webgis portal will serve as a basis to plan actions in the blue energy sector and investigate Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats of blue energies, referring to regulatory, economic, social and environmental issues.
2 Blue Energy Labs: interpretati come strumenti di cooptazione per coinvolgere soggetti potenzialmente interessati a sviluppare il settore delle Blue Energy - amministrazioni, centri di ricerca, imprese e gruppi di cittadini - nell'area Mediterranea, i BEL saranno organizzati nelle regioni dei partner di progetto per contribuire a costruire parternariati transnazionali e collaborazioni tra enti pubblici e soggetti privati e creare le migliori opportunità per lo sviluppo delle Blue Energy.
3 Progetti Pilota nelle regioni Med: I Blue Energy Labs regionali serviranno a creare reti di soggetti nel settore delle Blue Energy per condividere competenze tecniche, gestionali, legali, amministrative e progettare 20 progetti pilota (2 per ogni regione partner). I processi partecipativi serviranno a definire procedure decisionali e operative basate sulla cooperazione e a creare i presupposti per realizzare e installare nuovi impianti.

Project partners

MAESTRALE involves 11 project partners from 8 Mediterranean countries:
1 UNISI University of Siena (IT)
2 CEEI Business Innovation Centre of Valencia (ES)
3 IRENA Istrian Regional Energy Agency L.t.d. (HR)
4 AUTH Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (GR)
5 GOLEA Goriška local energy agency, Nova Gorica (SL)
6 OC-UCY Oceanography centre, University of Cyprus (CY)
8 UAlg University of Algarve (PT)
9 ARFVG Autonomous Region Friuli Venezia Giulia (IT)
10 CMMA Maritime Cluster of Andalusia (ES)
11 MIEMA Malta Intelligent Energy Management Agency (MT)

Scientific results obtained


Goffetti, G., Montini, M., Volpe, F., Gigliotti, M., Pulselli, F. M., Sannino, G., & Marchettini, N. (2018). Disaggregating the SWOT Analysis of Marine Renewable Energies. Frontiers in Energy Research, 6, 138.
Goffetti, G., Patrizi, N., Neri, E., Magaudda, S., Pulselli, R. M., & Bastianoni, S. (2018). Categorization and geo-localization of Marine Renewable energies for the mediterranean area. WIT Transactions on Ecology and the Environment, 217, 401-409.
Patrizi N, Pulselli RM, Neri E, Niccolucci V, Vicinanza D, Contestabile P and Bastianoni S (2019) Lifecycle Environmental Impact Assessment of an Overtopping Wave Energy Converter Embedded in Breakwater Systems. Front. Energy Res. 7:32.