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The Low Carbon Economy Ltd

29 Sep 2008 07:09:26

Scotland could get largest tidal power plant

Scotland could get largest tidal power plant
The world's largest tidal power farm could be built in Scotland and Northern Ireland, following successful testing of the technology.

ScottishPower Renewables has announced plans to install up to 60 turbines in three locations, to generate 60 megawatts (MW) – enough to power 40,000 homes.

The Lanstrom tidal devices rest on the sea floor on three legs and have blades that are 20 metres long.

They turn at least ten metres below the surface and are "predictable" because of the regularity of tides.

According to ScottishPower Renewables director Keith Anderson, the Pentland Firth – one of the three sites – has enough tidal power to meet one third of Scotland's energy needs.

He said: "This is a historic day for the development of marine energy. The rapid technological advancement of tidal power has enabled us to progress plans for this substantial project which has the real potential to deliver significant environmental and economic benefits.

"Tidal power is completely renewable, being driven by the gravity of the sun and moon, with no carbon dioxide emissions, whilst being entirely predictable in nature."

The Crown Estate meanwhile, has highlighted the importance of making the most of the renewable assets in the Pentland Firth.

Director of the marine estate Rob Hastings said: "As well as the economic opportunities for energy production here, the area could become a world class centre of excellence in wave and tidal power development, research, testing and environmental monitoring."



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