26 November, 2008
MARINE renewable energy company Marine Current Turbines is pressing ahead in a
bid to deploy 50MW of capacity in the tidal races of the Pentland Firth by 2015.
The company, which successfully operates a 1.2 MW commercial underwater windmill
(SeGen) in the waters off Northern Ireland, aims to increase that figure to
300MW by 2020, if the local grid can take it.
In September this year, the Crown Estate designated the Pentland Firth as the
first marine renewable energy province with a target of up to 700 MW of capacity
Yesterday (Tuesday) the company's managing director Martin Wright said: "We
welcome the Crown Estate's competition for the Pentland Firth.
"Given our experience with our SeaGen tidal project in Northern Ireland's
Strangford Lough, we believe that we have a clear and substantial technical
advantage as well as unique, practical experience of installing and running a
commercial scale tidal power system."
The company has now appointed Cavendish Corporate Finance to secure new
investment in the company.
Martin Wright added: "Harnessing the power of the Pentland Firth will be
challenging and there are still substantial issues, in particular financing and
grid connection, which will have to be addressed.
"However the move by the Crown Estate is a significant and welcome step forward
if the UK is to harness the sea's energy potential on a truly commercial basis."
Capitalising on its work in Northern Ireland, Marine Current Turbines is
currently working with npower renewables to develop a 10MW tidal farm off the
coast of Anglesey, in north Wales.