Scottish Tidal Power Takes Leap Forward

Earlier this month, The Scottish Government, which is already betting big on offshore wind power, approved the development of a 10 megawatt tidal power array in The Sound of Islay off of Scotland’s west coast. The project is said to be the first of its kind in the world.

ScottishPower Renewables (SPR), a subsidiary of Iberdrola Renovables, will install ten 1 MW tidal turbines in The Sound of Islay sometime after 2013, but perhaps not until 2015. The company hopes to begin work on the project next year, as the turbines proposed are Hammerfest Strom HS1000s, up-scaled prototypes which are expected to be tested in the Orkney Isles later this summer.

image via ScottishPower Renewables

SPR has been working in the Islay area for two years, and anticipates that over $800,000 will be spent locally during the development of the tidal power project. Once commercially operational, SPR’s ten turbines will produce power for Diageo, a local utility company that will provide electricity to eight distilleries and maltings in the area. The Scottish firm isn’t the only tidal power developer in the country, however, and may have some stiff competition to face in the future.

Last year, we reported that another company, Atlantis Resources, was developing a similar 1 MW tidal turbine that would also be deployed in Orkney, Scotland. And this January, we highlighted the impressive 200 MW turbine system proposed in India’s Gulf of Kutch, also backed by the Atlantis corporation.

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Aaron Colter is a freelance writer and marketing consultant in Portland, Oregon. A graduate of Purdue University, he has worked for the NCAA, Dark Horse Comics, Willamette Week, AOL, The Huffington Post, Top Shelf Productions, DigitalTrends, theMIX agency, SuicideGirls, EarthTechling, d'Errico Studios and others. He is also the co-founder of BananaStandMedia.com, a free record label, recording studio, and distribution service for independent musicians.

    • TEFinnegan

      Wish there was audio with your video.

      • Nino Marchetti

        We do as well…sigh.