The sites were awarded to a number of utilities and advanced technology developers including Marine Current Turbines, Pelamis Wave Power, SSE Renewables Developments – joining forces with Aquamarine and Open Hydro, Scottish Power Renewables and EON.
Oliver Wragg, RenewableUK Wave and Tidal Development Manager, said: "The leasing round has exceeded all expectations by awarding 1.2 gigawatts (GW) of project leases, considerably up from the originally scheduled 700 megawatts (MW). This clearly demonstrates that the industry has now reached a stage where it is ready to deliver.
In order to facilitate the transition from research and development to scaling up and delivery, and in response to the Government’s Marine Energy Action Plan, RenewableUK has produced a key document published today "The Next Steps for Marine Energy."
The document recommends that the government commits a minimum of 220 million in capital support for technology development over the next five years, with the aim of powering 1.4 million homes with marine energy by 2020, and producing an annual sector turnover of 900 million by 2030.
Peter Madigan, RenewableUK Head of Offshore Renewables, said: "RenewableUK’s report demonstrates that by investing now the Government can generate jobs and income in the long term. We have a once in a generation opportunity to build a world leading industry which will help ensure we meet our carbon reduction targets and deliver economic benefits. The industry is ready and the Government must act now."
RenewableUK, formerly BWEA, is the trade and professional body for the UK wind power and marine renewables industries. Formed in 1978, and with 565 corporate members, RenewableUK is the leading renewable energy trade association in the UK.
The companies which have signed leases are:
* SSE Renewables Developments Ltd, 200 MW for Costa Head site
* Aquamarine Power Ltd & SSE Renewables Developments Ltd, 200 MW for Brough Head site
* Scottish Power Renewables UK Ltd, 50 MW for Marwick Head site
* E.ON, 50 MW for West Orkney South site
* E.ON, 50 MW for West Orkney Middle South site
* Pelamis Wave Power Ltd, 50 MW for Armadale site.
* SSE Renewables Developments (UK) Ltd, 200 MW for Westray South site
* SSE Renewables Holdings (UK) Ltd & OpenHydro Site Development Ltd, 200 MW for Cantick Head site
* Marine Current Turbines Ltd, 100 MW for Brough Ness site
* Scottish Power Renewables UK Ltd, 100 MW for Ness of Duncansby site.