Island Tidal Turbine Scheme Plans Submitted
by J Roberts
Seagen Wales has submitted plans to build a £70 million, 10.5 MW tidal turbine project between Carmel Head and Skerries, off Anglesey in North Wales.
Seagen Wales is a partnership between Marine Current Turbines Limited (MCT), a Bristol based company, and RWE npower renewables.
Assuming these proposals are successful , the partnership hopes this renewable tidal energy project, within a 0.56 square kilometre area in the Langdon Ridge and with a potential to generate electricity for 10,000 homes on the island, will be ready by 2015.
The use of green tidal energy to generate electricity has significant benefits, not least its predictability and reliability, when compared with wind turbines where generation is subject to fluctuations in wind strength.
Seagen Wales has met the criteria set by the government for operating performance, and as a result is hopeful of securing low carbon, clean tech funding.
With the Welsh Assembly Government committed to boosting renewable sources of power in Wales, this Anglesey tidal energy scheme should contribute towards the goal of capturing around 10% of tidal strema and wave energy off the coast of Wales by 2025.
In 2008 MCT set the ball rolling with its new Seagen turbine technology with a turbine farm in Strangford Lough, which supplies the grid in Northern Ireland.
With concerns about the lack of skilled job opportunities on Anglesey, this proposal offers the prospect of generating new, skilled, green energy jobs and a supply chain which local businesses can provide for servicing the turbines.
The Seagen partnership has reached out to the various groups on the island whose activities and interests might be affected by these proposals should the project proceed.
Among those who have an interest in how the turbines would operate are local fisherman, boat users and yachtsmen and marine conservation groups.
This proposed tidal energy scheme can kick-start the various projects which have been muted to contribute to the Energy Island concept, making Anglesey a hub for new, high tech business and job growth.
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