Nova Scotia

NSP gives tidal power 'file' to Emera

Nova Scotia Power is handing over research and development of tidal energy to its parent company, Emera.
The turbine, which was destroyed after a week in the water, cost nearly $10 million to build. (CBC)

Nova Scotia Power is handing over responsibility for research and development into tidal energy to its parent company, Emera.

The power company gave up its spot on the Bay of Fundy for tidal power research in December.

In 2009, the company put a turbine in the water near Parrsboro, but it was badly damaged in the first week of operation.

"We need a different platform," said Rob Bennett, a spokesperson for Nova Scotia Power. "But we haven't given up and we continue to pursue that."

Research and development of any future projects will be done through Emera, a company with deep pockets and a senior employee researching tidal devices.

"The technology to really work in the Bay of Fundy is not fully developed yet. And we think it's prudent to take some experimental steps before we again deploy a significant commercial scale turbine in that regime."

Emera maintains it has a keen interest in tidal power but the company has no berth, no timeline and has not included tidal power in its energy supply mix for the next 20 years.

Three other companies have maintained their spots in Parrsboro: Alstom, Atlantis, and Minas Basin Pulp and Power. Those companies are continuing their attempts to create a workable turbine design for a harsh environment.

The provincial government will send out a request for proposals later this summer to fill the berth vacated by NSP.