With the recent announcement that the Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond is launching a £103 million fund for Scottish renewable energy projects, it is a prosperous time for the industry, especially for wave and tidal technologies.
Wave and tidal energy generation is significant in the provision of energy to the UK, with the UK highly sought upon as a world leader in developing wave and tidal technologies. Development in this area is flourishing due to the thriving resources our shores provide, which allow us to take full advantage of the benefits provided by these technologies.
Technology and Investment
There are many entrepreneurs that have very innovative ideas for renewable wave and tidal technologies, unfortunately, the lack of investment can make it very difficult for development.
Fortunately, The Renewable Energy Investment Fund (REIF) is set to attract more private investment, and there are also plans to set up an advisory group that will support people who are looking for finance from the new UK Green Investment Bank. This is fantastic news for those entrepreneurs desperate for financial backing for their innovations, and the advisory group can help ensure that projects are prepared to put forward for investment. This group can also speed up the process, freeing up more time for the projects to evolve once investment has been allocated.
In a way, the process is similar to that of the popular program Dragons Den, whereby entrepreneurs present their ideas in the hope of being backed by one of the Dragons. The backers can not only invest money, but due to their exceptional business experience they can provide advice to ensure the business/invention is a success. There are many people out there with great ideas, but without financial backing and expert advice, that is all they are – ideas.
With the help that the proposed advisory group can provide, it private investment process easier, ensure that beneficial wave and tidal projects are advanced and, in turn, provide a more sustainable energy source for the country.
The £103 million fund and proposed advisory group is also great news for the renewable energy job market, as it has the potential of creating many more job within the industry.
With extra investment to fuel new and innovative technologies at numerous stages and help drive these technologies towards commercialisation, we are sure it will create more job vacancies and further improve our economy and help create a more sustainable future.
“Geographically speaking,Scotland is ideally suited to act as the hub of the marine energy industry. This is why the world leading European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC)is based in Orkney with 25% of European tidal potential and 10% of its wave potential,” said renewable energy consultant Tom Ward, who specialises in the marine energy industry. “The announcement of the REIF can only be welcomed; it will create jobs, create investment for innovative entrepreneurs and marine energy developers, and will contribute to a more sustainable society by alleviating our reliance on conventional energy sources.”