The Isle of Wight’s innovative tidal energy firm, Sustainable Marine Energy (SME), is creating new jobs as it develops unique sustainable electricity projects – thanks to two of the area’s most important green energy funds.
East Cowes-based SME has been awarded the grants by the Isle of Wight Council’s Solent Offshore Renewable Energy Consortium (SOREC) and Future Solent’s Green Growth Fund (FS GGF) for the development of PLAT-O – the company’s pioneering under water tidal turbine platform.
SME’s PLAT-O system uses the flow of the tide to generate electricity for local communities and is capable of producing sustainable and predictable carbon-free electricity with zero emissions throughout the year. It is also unobtrusive as it sits underneath the sea surface.
SME’s work is seen as particularly valuable to the Isle of Wight and Solent areas because of the contribution it is making to the emerging offshore renewable energy industry which creates not only sustainable power, but also new revenues and employment.
Jason Hayman (pictured), Managing Director of SME, says:
“We are very excited to receive this funding, and extremely grateful to the Isle of Wight Council and Future Solent for their vision and support which ensure we can deliver key projects and employ more staff for the development of PLAT-O.
“We are proud of the part we already play in the Isle of Wight’s thriving marine engineering industry as PLAT-O is being designed, built and tested on the Island. This new boost to our growth will also create a ripple effect of benefits for the specialist companies in the Island and Solent areas we use for the supply of parts, fabrication and expertise and so help grow the local economy.”
Cllr Ian Stephens, leader of the Isle of Wight Council says:
“We are delighted that the SOREC scheme, led by the IoW Council, has been able to help Sustainable Marine Energy in developing their innovative products for the tidal energy market. The offshore renewable energy industry is highly important for our Island’s economy and the five new well paid jobs that SME are creating, thanks to the SOREC grant, are evidence of the impact that can be made in this sector.”
Future Solent brings together the Solent Local Enterprise Partnership (Solent LEP), with the Partnership for Urban South Hampshire (PUSH) and the Hampshire Chamber of Commerce, to help develop a low carbon economy in the Solent area which will help stimulate sustainable economic growth, create jobs, and reduce the area’s carbon footprint. It is supported by the Government’s Regional Growth Fund.
Future Solent’s Green Growth Fund is supported by Hampshire Chamber of Commerce, Eastleigh Borough Council (Accountable Body), Local First CIC, University of Portsmouth, University of Southampton and Southampton Solent University.
More information about FS GGF is available at: http://www.futuresolent.org.uk/about-us/green-growth-programme-rgf/.