The Canadian government has announced its largest-ever investment in tidal energy — $28.5 million to Sustainable Marine in Nova Scotia to deliver Canada’s first floating tidal energy system.

“We are harnessing the power of our tides to power our homes, our businesses and our communities. This is how we build our clean energy future,” said Seamus O’Regan, Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources.

Sustainable Marine developed an innovative floating tidal energy platform called PLAT-I that has undergone rigorous testing on the waters of Grand Passage for nearly two years. A second platform is currently being assembled in Meteghan, Nova Scotia and will be launched in Grand Passage later this year for testing before relocation to the Fundy Ocean Research Centre for Energy (FORCE) in 2021. These platforms will make up the tidal energy array.

The objective of the project is to provide up to nine megawatts of predictable and clean renewable electricity to Nova Scotia’s electrical grid. This will reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 17,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide a year while creating new jobs in the province. The project will also demonstrate the ability to harness tides as a reliable source of renewable electricity to power homes, vehicles and businesses.

Tidal energy — a clean, renewable energy source generated by ocean tides and currents — has the potential to significantly reduce Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions and improve local air quality by displacing electricity generated from fossil fuels.

Funding for the project comes from Natural Resources Canada’s Emerging Renewables Power Program, part of Canada’s more than $180-billion Investing in Canada infrastructure plan for public transit projects, green infrastructure, social infrastructure, trade and transportation routes and Canada’s rural and northern communities.

“Nova Scotia has one of the best natural resources in the world for tidal energy and provides the infrastructure and support for companies looking to grow their business,” said Jason Hayman, CEO Sustainable Marine. “Having a demonstration site such as FORCE enables us to accelerate the commercialization of our technology. This investment will not only advance our tidal energy technology but also provide a source of clean renewable energy that has a positive impact on rural coastal communities and the environment.”

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