Bluemull Tidal Energy Ltd
Bluemull Tidal Energy Limited operates the world’s first community owned tidal generator. The 30kW turbine which started to generate electricity in March 2014 is installed in a tidal stream between the Shetland Islands of Yell and Unst. In an approximate depth of 100ft (30m) the three bladed turbine is powered by the tides and feeds electricity onshore through a 0.6 mile (1km) subsea cable. Electricity generated is expected to provide power for up to 30 homes, a nearby ice plant and Cullivoe Harbour Industrial Estate in North Yell.
Simon Forrest of Nova Innovation, the company that designed, built and installed the turbine, declared: “We are delighted to announce that the Nova 30 tidal turbine has been successfully deployed and is generating electricity to the grid. It marks a major achievement for the wider Scottish tidal industry with over 80 per cent of Nova’s supply chain Scottish based.”
The project was developed in partnership North Yell Development Council (NYDC), a local community development organisation that aims to create income streams to regenerate the local economy. NYDC is also developing a local wind farm.
Legal structure & set-up
The turbine is owned by Bluemull Tidal Energy Limited, a private limited company and a subsidiary of the NYDC. North Yell Development Council is a company limited by guarantee, registered with charitable status and one of the oldest community development organisations on Shetland.
The project was financed through the Scottish Government’s Community and Renewable Energy Scheme (CARES), Shetland Island Council and NYDC. With funding from Highlands and Islands Enterprise, Shetland Islands Council and LEADER, NYDC was able to appoint a project manager in Spring 2013.
NYDC will generate income through the direct sales of electricity and through feeding excess into the local grid.
- Securing funding for a relatively new technology
- Setting precedent for community ownership of a relatively new technology
- Predictable electricity supply
Size of Community
Local population of approx 1,000 represented through NYDC
Type of Energy Project
Stage of Development
We are delighted to announce that the Nova 30 tidal turbine has been successfully deployed and is generating electricity to the grid. It marks a major achievement for the wider Scottish tidal industry with over 80 per cent of Nova’s supply chain Scottish based.
Simon Forrest - Nova Innovation
North Yell Development Council is incorporated (though originally formed after WWII)
NYDC appoints a project manager; Bluemull Tidal Energy Limited is incorporated
NYDC receive offer for wind farm grid connection
Tidal generator parts arrive
Tidal turbine starts electricity production
Grid connection date for proposed wind farm