Frank Fortune, technical director of Royal Haskoning DHV, at the consultation event at the Spyglass Inn, Ventnor. Picture by Laura Holme.
PROPOSALS to build a tidal energy centre off the Island’s south coast could generate enough power for 15,000 Island homes and create up to 250 jobs on the IW.
The plans by PTEC Ltd would also make the Island a leading centre for the development of tidal energy, both nationally and internationally according to project leaders.
A public consultation into the Perpetuus Tidal Energy Centre (PTEC) scheme was staged at the Spyglass Inn, Ventnor, on Wednesday .
The centre would be built around 2.5km south of St Catherine’s Point and around six km from Ventnor itself, if the project was given the green light.
The project is planned to begin operations in 2016 and is a joint venture between the IW Council and Perpetuus Energy.
However, it has run into opposition from business owners and fishermen in Ventnor, who say the proposed site of the tidal generators at St Catherine’s Deep is a vital fishery ground for brown crabs.
Fishermen say the area lies on the crabs’ migratory route between Bullock Bank, off Hastings, East Sussex, to Start, Point Devon.
Frank Fortune, from Royal Haskoning DHV, one of the companies involved in developing the project, said: "It is an exciting project for the IW.
"The energy from this will be going into the grid directly. It is green energy, it is sustainable energy. The centre is between 30 metres and 60 metres deep.
"We are very keen to work with the fishermen and we believe it should be possible to operate and develop the site and have fishing activities going on at the same time."