Marine energy projects given £13m

Doughnut device on Loch Ness
Image caption The so-called "doughnut device" on Loch Ness was given £1.39m

Five marine energy projects are to share grants worth a total of £13m to help them harness the power of the sea.

Among the projects to benefit from the Waters grants will be the construction of one of the world's largest wave stations off the Western Isles.

Money will also be given to a doughnut-shaped wave energy device on Loch Ness.

Scotland has a quarter of Europe's potential tidal energy resource, and a tenth of its wave capacity.

Energy Minister Jim Mather said the biggest grant, of £6m, would be given to RWE Npower Renewables for its 10-turbine, 4MW Siadar project, off the coast of the Western Isles.

A further £3.5m will go to Aquamarine for its Oyster 3 project at the European Marine Energy Centre in Orkney, with £1.85m being awarded to OpenHydro to support a power conversion and control system.

AWS Ocean Energy will be given £1.39m to support tests in Loch Ness and the Cromarty Firth of its wave energy converter, sections of which would join together to form the device's doughnut shape.

And Ocean Flow Energy is to receive £560,000 to build and deploy the Evopod, a 35KW floating grid-connected tidal energy turbine at Sanda Sound in South Kintyre.

Mr Mather said: "Our seas have unrivalled potential to generate clean, green energy and bring jobs, investment and know-how to Scotland.

"This funding is another step on the road to a low carbon Scotland that maximises its resources for a sustainable future.

"Initial costs for marine energy are high and capital is needed - these grants will help attract further private investment. Our support will ensure a continuous stream of ideas and technologies can be tested, developed and refined at our world-class testing centre on Orkney and elsewhere around Scotland."

Waters is a collaboration between the Scottish government, Scottish Enterprise, Highlands and Islands Enterprise and European Regional Development Funds.

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