Waiving Profitability: The Oregon Wave Energy Trust’s Failure to Achieve a Return on Public Investment

By Joel Grey

The Oregon Wave Energy Trust (OWET) is a nonprofit, public-private partnership established by the Oregon State Legislature that works to “responsibly develop ocean energy by connecting stakeholders, supporting research and development, and engaging in public outreach and policy work.”[1] Since its inception in 2007, OWET has received nearly $12 million dollars in public funding[2] from the Oregon Innovation Council (Oregon InC), another government-sponsored entity. Oregon InC claims its initiatives must earn a profit[3], but that is clearly not the case with OWET. None of the money spent to date by OWET has led to any profitability.


Joel Grey is a research associate at Cascade Policy Institute. He is an undergraduate at George Fox University.

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