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Hydroelectric

Published on March 17th, 2011 | by Susan Kraemer

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Wind Giant Iberdrola Births Underwater Tidal Turbine Market off Scotland’s Coast

March 17th, 2011 by  



Iberdrola subsidiary ScottishPower Renewables plans to install a tidal power project between two islands, Islay and Jura, in the inner Hebrides off the west coast of Scotland. The expected power output of the £40million project will be 10 MW,  enough to power twice the number of homes on nearby Islay.

Tidal power is a source of renewable energy that has barely broken ground yet, even at the pilot scale. This would be the world’s largest tidal energy project to date. But tidal energy, with its predictable rhythm, has great potential in providing steady source of renewable energy.

There is no one winner in turbine design yet for tidal energy harvesting. This project comprises 10 tidal turbines with a curious look, like little crouching three-legged grasshoppers, but each has a power output of a solid 1 MW.

The design of these turbines comes from Hammerfest Strøm – a Norwegian company that, like ScottishPower Renewables itself, is also partly owned by Iberdrola, the Spanish wind power giant.

Iberdrola had invested $8 billion in the US, and birthed a US subsidiary, Iberdrola USA in 2008 on high hopes of a big new US wind market, but now with the change in fickle America – we voted in representatives to say climate change simply doesn’t exist – it is pulling back from wind farm development in the US.

When it pulled out of the US, Iberdrola cited the changing regulatory environment here (which is a polite way of describing the Tea Party takeover.)

But perhaps, this will be the turbine design that will finally make tidal power a viable new renewable energy business, indirectly brought to us by the climate deniers in the US congress who drove away Iberdrola.

Susan Kraemer@Twitter

 
 





 

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About the Author

writes at CleanTechnica, CSP-Today and Renewable Energy World.  She has also been published at Wind Energy Update, Solar Plaza, Earthtechling PV-Insider , and GreenProphet, Ecoseed, NRDC OnEarth, MatterNetwork, Celsius, EnergyNow, and Scientific American. As a former serial entrepreneur in product design, Susan brings an innovator's perspective on inventing a carbon-constrained civilization: If necessity is the mother of invention, solving climate change is the mother of all necessities! As a lover of history and sci-fi, she enjoys chronicling the strange future we are creating in these interesting times.    Follow Susan on Twitter @dotcommodity.



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