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Bay of Fundy tidal power turbines get approval from Nova Scotia government

A turbine for the Cape Sharp Tidal project is seen at the Pictou Shipyard in Pictou, N.S. on Thursday, May 19, 2016.
A turbine for the Cape Sharp Tidal project is seen at the Pictou Shipyard in Pictou, N.S. on Thursday, May 19, 2016. The Canadian Press

The government of Nova Scotia has approved the installation of two huge tidal turbines in the Minas Passage in the Bay of Fundy for tidal power research.

The turbines, designed by Cape Sharp Tidal, were supposed to be deployed this month, but were delayed due to concerns over their potential environmental impacts.

READ MORE: Long awaited tidal power turbine heading to Bay of Fundy next month

At the time, Cape Sharp Tidal said it was delaying deployment of the five-storey turbines to allow for more consultation with stakeholders who felt they weren’t heard.

The environment department announced Monday they’ve signed off on the project after reviewing the Environmental Effects Monitoring Plan and consulting with Fisheries and Oceans Canada.

“We are satisfied that the proposed plan, together with the monitoring and study improvements as we have directed, will help address information gaps and improve our understanding of the interaction between the two turbines and marine life in this unique environment,” Environment Minister Margaret Miller said in a release.

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Miller added that in order to know the turbines’ full impact on fish and marine mammals in the area “demonstration turbines need to be in the water.”

The turbines will be deployed at the Fundy Ocean Research Centre for Energy as an experiment. It’s expected the turbines could provide electricity for 1,000 homes when connected to the power grid.

The government also said that a new monitoring program will have to be put in place and accepted by the environment department and DFO before more turbines can be placed in the Bay of Fundy.

 

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