A sales pitch by Nova Innovation on local tidal energy generation was held on April 7 at the Eilean Eisdeal, the community trust on Easdale Island, Forargyll informs.
Last year Nova Innovation engaged in consultations with Eilean Eisdeal and neighbouring slate islands of Luing and Seil, on advantages and disadvantages of potential tidal turbine installation in Cuan Sound. The Nova tidal turbine is a patent protected horizontal axis, 3-blade, fully yawing, gravity anchored device.
The proposed project is allegedly related to the Intelligent Land Investment, onshore wind developer with considerable experience in community based wind farm development, which is engaged in procuring government subsidies for community energy projects.
Taking into account the powerful grip of the renewable energy development, the question remains what are the effects on the environment of Nova’s specific proposal for marine turbines in Cuan Sound.
Cuan forms part of a Special Area of Conservation (SAC) with a high level of legal protection, therefore comprehensive research on the potential influence of the three bladed horizontal-axis device on the marine wildlife is a paramount.
It is said that wind turbines produce low frequency noise which can have adverse effects on human health, in addition to that of seals, otters and bottlenose dolphins. What is more, the existence of a vortex effect in wind turbines poses a danger to birds. Similarly, subsea turbines could also have a deadly effect on marine species and divers.
At the moment Nova-30 (30kW) device is undergoing construction for the Bluemull Sound in Shetland. The 30kW device will be grid connected, power a local ice-plant and industrial estate and will help to re-generate the fragile economy of North Yell. Commissioning is set for 2012, which will pave the way for it to become the world’s first community owned tidal scheme.
Offshore Nieuws Staff, April 11, 2012; Image : Nova Innovation