A SCOTTISH company has secured £1.2 million for a major tidal power project which aims to create the world’s “blue energy island”.

Nova Innovation, which is headquartered in Edinburgh, has the investment from the Welsh Government for its Enlli project in north Wales.

The project creates the opportunity to generate electricity from the natural ebb and flow of the tide between Ynys Enlli – “The Island in the Currents” – and the mainland of the Llŷn Peninsula. It has the potential to help the island switch from dependency on diesel generation to become the world’s first blue energy island.

The funding, provided by the Welsh Government through the European Regional Development Fund, will support the environmental consenting and engineering design work for the project. Nova plans to put five 100 kW turbines on the seabed with a view to install more.

Simon Forrest, Nova’s CEO, said: “Harnessing the immense, natural power of the tides in Swnt Enlli (Bardsey Sound) will provide clean ocean energy for the local community and help regenerate the local economy."

Jess Hooper from Marine Energy Wales added: “This is yet another boost for the marine energy sector in Wales, and helps us deepen our Celtic connections as this project draws on expertise and learning from the world’s first offshore tidal array – three tried, tested and monitored turbines installed in the Shetland Islands, Scotland.

"Transferring this knowledge and experience to North Wales will have far reaching benefits, for communities, business, the sector and, crucially, for wider action on climate change. Following on from Wales’ Climate Week, it’s great to see the blue economy contributing to the green recovery with action translating to real progress in Wales’ bid to achieve net-zero.” 

And Lesley Griffiths, the Welsh Government Minister for Environment, Energy and Rural Affairs, said: “As Wales looks to respond to the challenges posed by the climate emergency, we need to harness the ambition and innovative spirit of renewable energy providers like Nova, ensuring that their expertise and experience can be put to good use in Wales. 

“As such, I am very pleased that we have been able to support Nova in their Ynys Enlli tidal energy project. Wales was at the leading edge of the first industrial revolution and through projects like these we can play a leading role in the green industrial revolution taking place today.”