Scots firm nets international green investment

An Edinburgh-based company has secured £1.85 million from European investors to fund green energy projects in Scotland, Energy Minister Fergus Ewing has revealed.

Nova Innovation and green energy company ELSA from Belgium have teamed up to build the Shetland Tidal Array, five 100kW tidal turbines in the Bluemull Sound site that will power the equivalent of 300 homes.

The array will be developed in two phases with commissioning of the first three devices by the end of 2015.

Scottish Enterprise is supporting Nova Innovation with £1.9 million of grant and loan funding for the project and to help accelerate the company’s growth of new projects across Europe.

Nova Innovation will travel to the European Parliament in Brussels next week to showcase its renewables ambitions and seek further backing to support its future plans.

The news comes weeks after Nova Innovation announced the successful deployment of the world’s first community owned tidal turbine in Shetland.

Fergus Ewing, MSP, Scottish Energy Minister
Fergus Ewing, MSP, Scottish Energy Minister

Mr Ewing said:

“ELSA’s decision to invest in Scotland is a testament to the confidence felt by international investors to help develop the huge wave and tidal energy resources from the waters around the Scottish coast.

“The Scottish Government and its agencies will do everything we can to ensure Scotland benefits from the significant economic opportunities the renewables industry presents.’

“Scotland’s record in attracting international investment is very strong. Last week’s Ernst & Young Attractiveness Survey revealed that foreign investment to Scotland in 2013 reached its highest level since 1997.

Simon Forrest, Managing Director of Nova Innovation, said:

“This partnership agreement will accelerate Nova Innovation’s technology development; help secure the company’s Scottish manufacturing base and expand the integrated supply chain here in Shetland and Scotland.

“The pan-European vision of the partnership will open up export markets and deliver real growth for the marine energy sector.”

Olivier Bontems, Managing Director of ELSA (IDETA), said

“The partnership between ELSA (IDETA) and Nova Innovation contains all the fundamental elements of a successful partnership: dedicated partners; commitment to the development of renewable energy in Energy; strong innovation in GreenTech; and co-operation across European regions.

“We are very proud to be part of this project and to contribute to the development of green electricity in Scotland.”

Seonaid Vass, director of renewables & low carbon technologies at Scottish Enterprise, said:

“Scotland is leading the world when it comes to innovation in wave & tidal energies – and Nova’s continued success is a real testament to the strengths in the sector.

“Seeing this tidal technology developed into in-sea tidal arrays is a significant step forward for the industry, and we will be working closely with the company to continue to support its work in this and other potential projects.”

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