The West Australian State Government has approved plans to build State’s first tidal energy power station, in the West Kimberley.

Tidal Energy Australia plans to build a wave power station at Doctor's Creek, near Derby, that will generate 40 megawatts of electricity.

The proposed power project is a double basin system with a total of 5 kilometres of barages. There will be six 8 megawatt turbines.

In a double basin system, one basin is filled at high tide and the other is emptied at low tide. Turbines are placed between the basins. Two-basin schemes have advantages over normal schemes in that generation time can be adjusted with high flexibility and it is also possible to generate almost continuously. In normal estuarine situations, double basin schemes can be very expensive to construct because of the extra length of barrage but they can be cost-effective in suitable geographies.

A contract for the construction of power lines to major population centres in the West Kimberley still needs to be negotiated for the project to go ahead.