June 18, 2007

New Brunswick, Nova Scotia move to next stage in tidal energy studies

FREDERICTON, NB-New Brunswick and Nova Scotia are pooling their resources to take the next step in studying tidal energy in the Bay of Fundy. Both provinces have committed to working together to complete Strategic Environmental Assessments (SEAs) of the Bay of Fundy before finalizing marine energy policies. The SEA will provide a better indication of where potential marine energy sites could be located and any opportunities and constraints which could exist. It will consist of two parts: an Environmental and Socio-economic Impact Assessment Report (ESIA) and extensive stakeholder feedback and consultation. Each province will contribute up to $75,000 to complete the ESIA. A request for proposals (RFP) will be issued by the Offshore Energy and Environmental Research Association (OEER), an organization established in March 2006 to promote and fund research on energy and marine environment. Its members include St Francis Xavier University, Cape Breton University, Acadia University and the Nova Scotia Department of Energy. Proponents have until June 29, 2007 to bid on the RFP. Documents (in English only) are available online at www.offshoreenergyresearch.ca/Home/tabid/77/Default.aspx. Last year, the two provinces participated in a tidal energy study conducted by the Electric Power Research Institute, which determined and analyzed the approximate megawatt potential for each province. The new study will go into greater detail on site-specific issues.

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