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Tide-power plan wins parish backing

Saturday, February 21, 2009 - 9:05

THE Island's first tidal-powered energy generator is being recommended for approval by Wootton Bridge Parish Council — provided the design is sensitive and noise levels are kept to a minimum.
If the ambitious plan is given the green light by the Isle of Wight Council, Wootton’s historic mill pond will be used to power the Lakeside Park Hotel, a luxury complex next to the pond, owned by applicants Godshill Park Developments.
The application is being made through IPTec Sustainable Energy Technologies, a Sandown-based energy consultancy firm that will design and build the tidal generator.
David Edwards, of IPTec, told Wootton Bridge Parish Council the scheme, unique in the UK, would improve flood defences and manage the pond’s water level.
He also said the firm had worked closely with the Environment Agency and Natural England to ensure the scheme would be environmentally friendly.
In response to public concerns about the design of the hut to house the generator, which will be roughly the size of a garden shed, Mr Edwards said the firm was open to suggestions.
He could not offer concrete assurances regarding noise levels, except to say there would be a constant low hum.
“The turbine is below the water level and we will be damping it to keep noise levels as low as possible,” he said.
“We would expect the noise to be minimal but I can’t give you 100 per cent on that until we test it.”
The parish council agreed to back the plan in principle, but said it needed more information about noise levels and the design of the generator hut before making a final decision.
Cllr Barry Abraham said: “We want to see renewable energy and if those concerns are met, we should agree to it.”

 


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