Earlier I wrote about Tidal Energy on Islay, which I mentioned in the Islay Energy Trust News from March. In the meanwhile a public meeting was held on Wednesday 2nd April, where members of the community-owned Islay Energy Trust (IET) gave overwhelming support to the IET Boardâ€™s proposal to lead the development of Scotlandâ€™s first commercial-sized tidal energy project in collaboration with The Robert Gordon University (RGU), Aberdeen. The IET website published this news on their website on the 2nd of April and today I found an article on another website referring to these Tidal Energy plans in the Sound of Islay. The article I'm referring to was published on the website of a magazine called Power Engineering and is, as far as I know, the only external source so far to write about this exciting new project on Islay. A quote from the article titled "Remote island community to lead Scotland's first tidal energy project": Continue reading.....
A remote Scottish island community has given overwhelming approval to develop a 2 MW tidal energy project, which will be the first in the country. The isle of Islay has backed the Islay Energy Trust (IET) to lead the development of Scotland's first commercial-sized tidal energy project in collaboration with The Robert Gordon University (RGU), Aberdeen. The proposed project is likely to consist of four to six turbine devices installed in the Sound of Islay. The development phases are expected to cost up to Â£750 000 ($1.5m) and take around three years to complete. Once in operation, revenue would be generated from electricity sales.
No decision has yet been taken on the type of technology to be installed. The process of selecting a suitable tidal device will be based on a set of technical, commercial and environmental criteria and subject to independent verification. IET and RGU will be consulting widely with stakeholders, including the Crown Estate, local fishermen, ferry operators Caledonian MacBrayne and Argyll & Bute Council, tidal technology developers, the Scottish and Westminster Governments, Scottish Natural Heritage.
The Sound of Islay, Location for Tidal Energy on Islay
The IET website has the full story which includes a consultation document. IET Chairman, Philip Maxwell, says: 'A particular feature of this proposal is the innovative business model. Instead of the more conventional route involving a large energy utility company or turbine manufacturer, the Islay community is taking the initiative in leading the development of what is intended to be a commercially viable and strategically important project. IET wishes to ensure that any exploitation of the considerable tidal energy resources in the seas around the Isle of Islay yields substantial and sustainable benefits to the Islay community, as well as helping to provide greater energy security for the island by supplying around a quarter of its electricity demand.
This prestigious project will result in more good publicity for the island and again Islay is the first to introduce a new environmental friendly source of energy in Scotland. The first time was with the installation of the Wave Power Generator at Portnahaven, known as Limpet 500 (Land Installed Marine Powered Energy Transformer), which feeds 500 kilowatts of electricity into the island's grid.